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Omega-3 Fatty Acid : Sources and Benefits -

What are omega-3 fatty acids? How much do you need? And what do all those abbreviations -EPA, DHA, and ALA - really mean? What are source to get omega -3 fatty acids?

Omega-3 fatty acid or n-3 fats, is perhaps the only fat that you should not shy away from! It is one of the most talked about fatty acid in the recent years and is essential for the body in more ways than one. Omega-3 fatty acids arepolyunsaturated fats that provide the body with nutrients. Like some vitamins, it is not made by our body and therefore needs to be sourced from the food we eat.

There are three types of omega-3 fatty acid, ALA or Alpha-linolenic acid, DHA or docosahexaenoic acid and EPA or eicosapentaenoic acid. ALA or alpha- linolenic acid can be sourced from several foods and our body has the ability to turn ALA into DHA and EPA.

All of these are very important for the proper functioning and health of our body. If we do not receive enough of these, the body will have various health issues like heart diseases, high cholesterol, diabetes and even cancer.

Here are the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids

  • Omega-3 fatty acid is good for the heart. It helps in decreasing the risk ofcardiovascular diseases such as blockage in arteries and abnormal hearbeat.
  • It is great for skin. A moderate consumption of omega-3 fatty acid will give you flawless healthy skin.
  • It stimulates blood circulation and prevents blood clots that can lead to strokes.
  • Omega-3 deficiency can make you depressed and crabby. Therefore, including it in your daily diet will help lift up your mood.
  • According to research consuming omega-3 fatty acids helps in preventing the occurrence of certain types of cancer such as breast cancer, prostate cancer and lung cancer.
  • Consumption of omega-3 fatty acids is linked to reduced risk factors such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids also aids in keeping hair healthy and lustrous.
  • Omega -3 fatty acids lowers the risk of eye diseases such as macular degeneration and dry eye syndrome.
  • According to research omega-3 fatty acids reduces inflammation which leads to arthritis.

Sources of Omega-3

Apart from the supplements that are available in the market, omega-3 fatty acids are found in small amounts in various food. Including them in your everyday diet, will ensure that you get the much needed omega-3 in a daily basis.

Here are some such foods:

  • Fish: Salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines and tuna
  • Shellfish: Prawns, lobsters, crabs and clams
  • Nuts: Walnuts, peanuts and hazelnuts
  • Seeds: Flax seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds and chia seeds
  • Fresh produce: Cauliflower, spinach, parsley, Brussels sprouts and kale
  • Oils: Mustard oil, canola oil, olive oil, walnut oil, flaxseed oil, rapeseed oil and cod liver oil

One can also have omega-3 enriched eggs, soybeansFree Reprint Articles, bread and tofu.

As we have seen there are health benefits of having omega-3 fatty acids and so you should include them in your diet.

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