Omega-3, or fish oil, is the second most popular daily dietary supplement after multivitamins among those taking dietary supplements in the United States. But if for some reason you don’t want to consume fish oil (you don’t eat fish or you don’t want to have that much oil in your diet), there are other ways to meet your omega-3 needs, including whole foods high in omega-3s -Contents such as seeds, nuts and beans. Here are exactly the foods that you should be adding for omega-3s.
Since the body cannot produce these fatty acids on its own, these essential fats must come from the food you eat. They offer unique health benefits, including improving mood, brightening dull skin, and fighting inflammation. In particular, studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids lower blood pressure, regulate the heart rate and improve the function of blood vessels, among other things. Omega-3 fatty acids are also important in regulating brain function and helping to improve your mood. So, if you are feeling a little distracted or depressed, you may have an omega-3 deficiency.
Men and women need different doses of omega-3 fatty acids, according to the National Institutes of Health: women should aim for 1.1 grams, while men need around 1.6 grams a day. Omega-3 deficiency is rare, but if you find that your skin is rough and flaky, or you develop eczema, an omega-3 deficiency may be a factor. The symptoms of omega-3 deficiency are not always physical, but can be mental or emotional and include exacerbating symptoms of depression, anxiety, or lack of focus.
Omega-3 fatty acids come in three different types: EPA, DHA and ALA. Both EPA and DHA are found in fish oil and seaweed, but ALA is mainly found in whole plant-based foods like nuts, beans, and other legumes. The body needs to convert ALA, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) into more active forms of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. Think of ALA as the building block so that your body gets what it needs. Therefore, a plant-based dieter will generally need to eat more of these nutrients to achieve the recommended daily amount. Here are the seven whole foods plant-based foods that you can use to meet your recommended daily omega-3 needs.
1. Chia seeds are one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids at 5 grams per ounce
Chia seeds are easy to add to your morning toast, salads, or even your pancake batter. In addition to omega-3 fatty acids, chia seeds also contain high levels of fiber, calcium, phosphorus and manganese. For each serving, chia seeds provide a third of your daily fiber requirement. In one study, chia seeds have been linked to reducing inflammation, controlling diabetes and high blood pressure, and boosting immunity.
2. Walnuts contain 3.34 grams of omega-3 fatty acids per cup
Add walnuts to your morning cake, vegan pesto sauce or as a topping in your salad. The skin of walnuts is the most nutritious and contains the most antioxidants. Eating walnuts every day is good for your heart, brain health and, according to studies, protects against cancer. They’re high in fiber, vitamin E, and manganese.
3. Hemp seeds contain 2.61 grams of omega-3 in 3 tablespoons
Use hemp seeds as a topping for your acai bowl or make homemade seed crackers to dip in your hummus. Hemp seeds are high in iron, vitamin E, calcium, fiber, and zinc. Eating more cannabis seeds will boost your immunity, heart health, promote hair, skin and nail growth, and keep your mind sharp, according to studies. Hemp seed oil also offers the same health benefits as seeds, but in a concentrated dose.
4. Flax seeds contain 1.8 grams of omega-3 fatty acids per tablespoon or a full day
Add flax seeds in pumpkin muffin mix, energy and protein balls, or berry dessert. Flax seeds are also filled with fiber and protein. Flaxseeds contain herbal compounds called lignans, which lower the risk of cancer.
5. Edamame contains 0.55 grams of omega-3 fatty acids per cup
Edamame tastes great in vegan ramen or a grain bowl filled with vegetables. Edamame is one of the best sources of vegetable protein at 17 grams per cup. The. Soybeans are also a great source of fiber, vitamin K, and antioxidants that reduce the risk of diabetes and heart disease, according to this study.
6. Kidney beans contain 0.19 g of omega-3 fatty acids per cup.
7. Brussels sprouts contain 0.135 g of omega-3 fatty acids in half a cup
Much more than a side dish, these cruciferous vegetables can also be added to your morning smoothie or someone else’s star with the right spices. Brussels sprouts are surprisingly high in vitamin C and vitamin K: 1/2 cup meets 81% of your daily vitamin C goals and 137% of your vitamin K needs. Brussels sprouts were recently linked to the prevention of blood vessel disease in a study.