Since ancient times, we have been aware of the benefits of Omega-rich foods. Berries, nuts, and seeds were an important part of our diet, and as humanity evolved and learned to harvest from the sea, fish and other seafood grew into a staple.
These foods contain the essential fatty omega oils.
Unfortunately, as time went on, omega-rich foods became less and less available. . .
The Shortage of Omega 3s
Our modern diet does not offer very many naturally-occurring Omega 3 sources.
Farmed fish contains less Omega 3 content than wild fish, and as prices rise for fresh foods, we get fewer and fewer berries and nuts in our diet every day.
What was once a staple food has become a treat, something that we eat once or twice a week if we’re lucky.
And consuming omega 3 fatty acids isn’t something you want to neglect. Science is quickly catching up to what our ancestors knew all along: Omega 3s are great for you.
Omega 3 and Healthy Fats
As anyone watching their waistline will tell you, reducing your fat intake is an essential part of a wholesome diet. Saturated fats and unhealthy amounts of fat can all contribute to heart disease.
One type of fat that you definitely don’t want to cut out, though, is your Omega fatty acids, EPA, DHA, and AHA (or Omega 3, Omega 6, and Omega 9). These fats are essential for cognitive function, heart and circulatory health, and — surprisingly! — for maintaining a healthy weight.
Unless you’re a big fish and seafood person, chances are you’re not getting enough of these in your day-to-day diet. You might be surprised at how much better you feel after adding in a supplement.
The Benefits of Omega 3 currently being studied:
- Promotes Brain Health and Cognitive Function
- Reduces Depression Symptoms
- Lowers Triglycerides
- Reduces symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis — joint pain, stiffness, and swelling
- Promotes Healthy Fetal Development
Plus much more. It’s even been shown to help increase the benefits of other medications, such as antidepressants or anti-inflammatories.
The Differences In Sources
Omega fatty acids come from a variety of different plant and animal sources. Plant sources include flaxseed oil, chia seeds, sage oil, some nuts and some berries. Animal sources include mackerel, tuna, shark, sword fish, krill, and many other sea creatures.
Not all Omega 3s are easily absorbed by the body.
For best results, you’ll want a supplement that has EPA and DHA. These are usually found as a fish oil supplement, such as krill oil, mackerel oil, or a generic blend of fish oil.
If you want to cover your bases, you could also take a plant-based supplement AHA, but this should be in addition to your EPA / DHA supplement. AHA can be found in flaxseed oil, chia seed oil, sage oil, and other plant-based oils.
What to Look For
USA Consumer Reported has sorted through several brands and found those rated highest in:
- Customer Satisfaction
As well as excelling in several other factors.