Food is information, not just calories. Food influences your gene functions, hormones, immune system, and even gut flora. Food controls every function within your body. And it is especially true for omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-3 fatty acids come from both animal and plant sources. The primary animal sources are krill oil and fish oil. The primary plant sources are flaxseed, chia, hemp, and walnut.
Omega-3 fatty acids benefits
No other known nutrient packs as many health benefits as omega-3 fatty acids. The most commonly known benefits of omega-3 fatty acids include –
- Reduced risk of heart disease
- Improvement of retinal function and eyesight
- Promotes brain development and function during pregnancy and early life
- Reduces symptoms of inflammation (even in autoimmune disorders such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis)
- Anti-cancer properties
- Improves liver health
- Improves joint and bone health
The essential fatty acids support and promote optimal health for children and adults.
Marine and Plant-based Omega 3 fatty acids
- Marine animals such as fish and krill provide eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which are mostly promoted for their protective effects on your heart.
- Plant-based omega-3 fatty acids mainly come from flaxseed, chia, hemp, and canola oil. They are reliable sources of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).
ALA is converted into EPA and DHA in your body at a meager ratio. Even if you consume large amounts of ALA, your body can only convert a relatively small amount into EPA and DHA, in the presence of sufficient enzymes. Hence, most doctors recommend daily plant-based omega-3 supplements.
YOU NEED ALL 3 TYPES OF OMEGA 3 IN YOUR DIET OR SUPPLEMENTS.
Why Plant-based Omega-3 Fats are Important
Simply put these extraordinary fats affect every part of your biochemistry. They control gene function, regulate your immune system, impact the speed and efficacy of your metabolism, and they are vital components of the cell membrane that covers each of the 100 trillion cells in your body.
There will be interruptions in the cell membranes without enough omega-3 fatty acids. This means when you don’t get enough omega-3 fats, messages can’t be properly relayed from one cell to another. If you’re not getting enough omega-3s, your body — including your brain — just can’t utilize it to its optimum potential!
That is one of the very basic reasons you need to consider taking plant-based omega-3 supplements daily.
Dietary Sources for Omega-3 Fats
Today the only real sources of plant-based omega-3 fats are:
- Chia seed
- Canola oil Even if you are including more than one of these sources in your diet, you will need plant-based omega-3 supplements to meet your daily need for omega-3 fatty acids (DA).
Finding a High-quality Omega-3 Supplement
The limited sources for all types of omega-3 fats and the fact that most people don't eat enough types of foods that contain them lead me to recommend high-quality vegetarian omega-3 supplements as part of the daily workhorse team of vitamins and minerals needed to help you optimize your health.
However, finding high-quality vegetarian omega-3 supplements.
You want to choose something free of mercury and other contaminants.
Look at reputable companies that certify their vegetarian omega-3 supplements are free from heavy metals, GMOs, and pesticides. Doctors and dieticians typically recommend taking 1000 mg of plant-based omega-3 supplements twice a day.