Omega 3 Source

Foods source for Omega-3s

Omega-3s are found naturally source in some foods and are added to some fortified foods.

You’ll get adequate food source of omega-3s by eating a spread of foods, including the


Fish and other seafood (especially cold-water fatty fish, like salmon, mackerel, tuna, herring, and sardines)

Nuts and seeds (such as flaxseed, chia seeds, and walnuts)

Plant oils (such as linseed oil , soyabean oil , and canola oil)

Fortified foods (such as certain brands of eggs, yogurt, juices, milk, soy beverages,

and infant formulas)

Omega-3 dietary supplements

include animal oil, krill oil, cod liver oil, and algal oil (a vegetarian source that comes from algae).

They supply a good range of doses and sorts of omega-3s.

Omega-3 Deficiency Symptoms

  • Problems with skin, hair, and nails.
  • Fatigue and trouble sleeping.
  • Deficits in concentration and attentiveness.
  • Joint pain and leg cramps.
  • Allergy symptoms.
  • Excessive ear wax.
  • Cardiovascular concerns.
  • Difficult menstrual cycles for women.

Omega−3 fatty acids, also called Omega-3 oilsω−3 fatty acids or n−3 fatty acids,

are polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) characterized by the presence of a double bond,

three atoms away from the terminal methyl group in their chemical structure.

 They are widely distributed in nature, being important constituents of animal lipid metabolism, and they play

an important role in the human diet and in human physiology.

The three types of omega−3 fatty acids involved in human physiology are α-linolenic

acid (ALA), found in plant oils, and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic

acid (DHA), both commonly found in marine oils.

Marine algae and phytoplankton are primary sources of omega−3 fatty acids.

Omega 3 improve the conditions of the joints in the body, enhance brain capacity,

strengthen the health of eyes, and keep the heart healthy and happy.

Omega 3 fatty acids may assist in fighting liver diseases, may help those with non-

alcoholic fatty liver disease and provide cardiovascular benefits.

Omega 3 may help those with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and provide

cardiovascular benefits.

 These are also linked with lessened risk of bleeding during surgery.

Omega-3 benefits to human health are well known.

Some of those include :

  • Reduce the risk of heart disease.
  • Improve brain function and prevent age-related mental decline
  • Prevent inflammation, arthritis
  • Reduce blood pressure
  • Lower LDL cholesterol
  • Prevent cancer
  • Age-Related Macular Degeneration
  • Vision health

Omega 3-6-9

Fatty acids, essential fatty acids (EFAs), in particular – alpha-linolenic (Omega-3) and

linoleic acid (Omega-6) — are intimately related to managing inflammation in the body.

These fatty acids provide building blocks for your body to produce agents that increase

and decrease inflammation in the body Your body is unable to produce Omega-3 and

Omega-6 fatty acids, so it is critical that you consume ingredients that serve as

a source of these fats.

These essential fats help with numerous body processes like regulating blood pressure

and brain development and functions.

Furthermore, fatty acids are vital for your body’s functions, from your respiratory system

to your circulatory system, which works together to circulate blood and oxygen

throughout the body.

 Fatty acids are also essential to your brain and other vital organs.

Ultimately, the body does produce the Omega-9 fatty acid, on its own.

The Omega-3 fatty acid is responsible for aiding brain function as well as preventing

cardiovascular disease.

 It helps prevent asthma, certain cancers, arthritis, high cholesterol, blood pressure, and

so on.

The required dosage of Omega-3 can be satisfied by consuming sources such as chia

seeds, walnuts, flaxseeds, hempseeds, and oil derived from these products.

Alternatively, Omega-3 algae oil is available, which is vegan and high in the Omega-3

fatty acids DHA and EPA, which reduce inflammation and the risk of chronic diseases, like

heart disease. DHA supports proper brain function and eye health.

Omega-6 can be found in various seeds, nuts, green veggies, and oils, such as olive oil.

These fatty acids play a crucial role in brain function, and normal growth and

development. Omega-6 fatty acids also help stimulate skin and hair growth, maintain

bone health, regulate metabolism, and maintain the reproductive system.

The trick is to consume the right amount of fatty acids; aim to consume double the

amount of Omega-6 fatty acid as the Omega-3.

Doing so will prevent inflammation, as Omega-6 fatty acids are pro-inflammatory.

 A plant-based, whole foods diet virtually ensures a balanced intake of both fatty acids.

Lastly, the Omega-9 fatty acids are a non-essential fatty acid that the body can produce,

but only when there are sufficient levels of Omega-3 and Omega-6 present, thus making

it dependent on the consumption of the others.

If your diet lacks the appropriate amounts of Omega-3 and Omega-6, then you can get

additional Omega-9 from your diet or a supplement (since your body wouldn’t be

producing it in this case).

Omega-9 fatty acids are naturally found in avocados, nuts, chia seed oil, and olive oil.

Omega-3s are a family of essential fatty acids that play important roles in your body and

should provide variety of health benefits.

As your body cannot produce them on its own, you want to get them from your diet.

The three most vital types are ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), DHA (docosah exaenoic acid),

and EPA (eicosa pentaenoic acid).

ALA is especially found in plants, while DHA and EPA occur mostly in animal foods and


Omega-3s are important components of the membranes that surround each cell in your


 DHA levels are especially high in retina (eye), brain, and sperm cells.

Omega-3s also provide calories to offer your body energy and have many functions in

your heart, blood vessels, lungs, immune system, and endocrine system (the

network of hormone-producing glands).

What Fish has the highest Omega 3?

The fish from the coldest waters, are highest in omega-3 oils.

However, it is quite important to also consider the level of possible contamination, by

mercury, PCB, and other toxins.

 Mercury, a naturally occurring element, is extremely toxic.

Unfortunately, it is in air and water pollution generated by some gold mining operations,

the burning of coal ( greatly increased in Asia), non-ferrous metal production, cement

production, etc. *

When choosing which kind of fish is most healthful, there are certain principles that are useful:

  1. The larger the fish, the higher the concentration of mercury, generally.

This is because larger fish tend to live a lot longer, allowing more accumulation of mercury.

They also eat lots of smaller contaminated fish, yet do not excrete much mercury.

 Therefore, it accumulates ( bio accumulation). Bottom feeding fish also have higher mercury levels.

They consume food in contaminated sediment, causing this effect.

  • Deep water fish are more contaminated with mercury, than shallow water fish! Why?

Microbes convert elemental mercury in organic mercury ( monomethy lmercury, a form especially toxic to humans).

 Interestingly, sunlight seems to render about 80% of this compound inactive. Obviously, in deep water there is far less sunlight.

Small fish eat the microbes, and in turn ate eaten by larger fish.

Hence, bioaccumulation of organic mercury in these fish. “Fish with

the highest levels of mercury include: the King Mackerel, 
Marlin, Orange

Shark, Swordfish, Tilefish, Bigeye, and Ahi Tuna. “ **

Mercury levels in fish are measured as parts per million (ppm).

Here are the average levels in different types of fish and seafood, from highest to lowest (5Trusted Source):

  • Swordfish: 0.995 ppm
  • Shark: 0.979 ppm
  • King mackerel: 0.730 ppm
  • Bigeye tuna: 0.689 ppm
  • Marlin: 0.485 ppm
  • Canned tuna: 0.128 ppm
  • Cod: 0.111 ppm
  • American lobster: 0.107 ppm
  • Whitefish: 0.089 ppm
  • Herring: 0.084 ppm
  • Hake: 0.079 ppm
  • Trout: 0.071 ppm
  • Crab: 0.065 ppm
  • Haddock: 0.055 ppm
  • Whiting: 0.051 ppm
  • Atlantic mackerel: 0.050 ppm
  • Crayfish: 0.035 ppm
  • Pollock: 0.031 ppm
  • Catfish: 0.025 ppm
  • Squid: 0.023 ppm
  • Salmon: 0.022 ppm
  • Anchovies: 0.017 ppm
  • Sardines: 0.013 ppm
  • Oysters: 0.012 ppm
  • Scallops: 0.003 ppm
  • Shrimp: 0.001 ppm

Of course, the trick is to find the highest omega 3 levels, combined with the lowest contamination.

This guide below does a really good job of sorting the choices.

The “heart “, symbol indicates high omega-3 content. Here is part of the guide( the

whole guide can be accessed by clicking the link at the bottom):

Why are Fish rich in Omega-3?

Ocean algae has omega 3. (Phytoplankton).

Zooplankton (animals eat that)-then krill eat those.

Then anchovettes dine on them. Ocean creatures that enter this chain

accumulate omega 3 on up.

All green plants produce omega 3. Grass is a good example.

However, when grass is cut and dried for “hay”, all the omega 3 is oxidized and it is gone.

By the way, taking fish oil without “antioxidants” risks similar oxidative losses in your body.

Does algae provide a good source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids for vegans?

Indeed algae are the primary source of Omega fatty acids.

As of today 80% of the Omega fatty acids consumed by humans are sourced from fish

harvested from the oceans.

Unfortunately fish do not produce Omega fatty acids, they only

bio-accumulate Omega fatty acids by consuming algae growing in the water in which

they live.

 Some examples of algae that produce high amounts of Omega fatty acids are

Schizochytrium sp., Phaeodactylum, Crypthecodinium.

Algae is the source for DHA/EPA. Fish eat the algae and we eat the fish, but we can just

eat the algae directly. There are vegan supplements available.

Is there a good source for all three types of Omega-3 that is acceptable to vegans?

For vegetarians looking to consistently get the full benefits of omega-3s, there is really only one option:

Marine algae omega-3 supplements. It is not hard to get omega-3s from vegetarian foods; however, it is very difficult to get

the right kinds of omega-3s from plants alone.

In plant sources like flaxseeds and walnuts you will find the type of omega-3s called ALA.

This form is not very useful by itself; for the full benefits of omega-3s you need the DHA

and EPA forms.

The body can convert ALA to DHA and EPA to some degree; however, this process is

inconsistent and inefficient.

Vitamin deficiencies (which most of us have) make it much harder.

Hence, marine algae, which is rich in DHA and EPA.

Even this source is somewhat problematic, because evidence indicates that

supplementation of omega-3s is much less effective than consuming fish, probably due

to rancidity and peroxidation of the fats due to capsule manufacture and storage

problems. But it might be better than the alternatives.

Or,  suppose, you could eat the algae itself. Might not be too appetizing though.

Who should take Omega 3 supplements?

Omega 3 Source

Almost everyone if not everyone. We consume too much of omega 6 as our cooking oils

are rich in omega 6 fats. 

Omega 3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory whereas omega 6 are inflammatory except


The optimum ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 should be at the most 1:4.

This ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 in American population is about 1:25.

As we go on using omega 6 rich cooking oil both at home and restaurants, our ratio

weighs highly towards pro inflammatory omega 6.

 Therefore, almost all of us need to supplement with omega 3.

The best form of omega 3 is to take DHA and EPA sourced from algae.

 Always look for the amount of DHA and EPA whenever taking omega 3 supplements.

Algal oil: Vegan omega 3 fatty acids for EPA and DHA

Your body needs omega-3 as essential fatty acids due to its numerous health benefits

from brain health to heart health as well as other protective roles.

However, plant-based foods lack the two most important biologically active omega-3

fatty acids EPA and DHA.

Therefore, lacking EPA and DHA are some of the top deficits of a vegan diet in most


 Fortunately, researchers have found Algal oil as a Vegan omega 3 fatty acid for EPA and

DHA as an answer to this challenge.

What is algal oil?

Algal oil is derived from marine algae that can also be raised on a farm.

Manufacturers extract oil from algal cells for commercialization.

A 2018 published scientific review concluded as algal oil offers a very good source of

EPA, DHA as well as some other omega 3 fatty acids with positive health effects.

(2) A large systematic search and meta-analysis of PubMed, Embase, Cochran Central

Register of Controlled Trials and from publication date through March

1, 2019, including clinical studies, as published in Oct. 2019, concluded marine omega 3

fatty acids significantly reduce the progression of heart disease.

(3) Advantage and Disadvantage of Algal Oil However, the extraction process is difficult

 as when the algal cell is ruptured, the delicate polyunsaturated fatty acids are exposed

to oxidation and damages as a result.

Due to this, the fatty acids go rancid. Some manufacturers also use chemical solvents to

extract omega-3 from algae.

Therefore, you need to ensure that no residual solvent remains in the oil.

More recently researchers have developed solventless extraction processes as a better

extraction process.

 (4) Fish can accumulate heavy metal toxins like mercury, spoiled fish oil may also

produce parasites. And such contaminants may come with your fish oil supplements if

not molecularly distilled.

On the other hand, Algal oil lacks odor as well as potential contaminants, unlike fish oil.

However, before buying, you need to ensure about oil extraction method or absence of

residual solvent with your algal oil, in case of the chemical extraction process.

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