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Good Sources of Omega 3 Fatty Acids

by Alexandra Haller
  • Overview

    Good Sources of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
    Good Sources of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
    A diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids has been linked with the prevention of chronic disease, inflammation, depression and cardiovascular disease. The fatty acids are also important in the development of the infant brain. The best sources of these heart-healthy fats are found in fish and flax seeds, but there are plenty of other good sources as well.
  • Fish

    Fatty fish are abundant sources of omega-3 fatty acids. The best choices are halibut, snapper, salmon and tuna. Other potent seafood sources are shrimp and scallops. The healthiest ways to cook your fish are steamed, grilled or baked. Stay away from fried fish because the positive aspect of omega-3 is diminished with all the trans fats. Beyond their fatty acids, fish have protein and minimal saturated fat, unlike fatty cuts of meat.
    Raw tuna
  • Tofu/Soybeans

    Fish aren't the only rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Tofu contains nearly 15 percent of the daily value for these fats in just 4 ounces. Tofu packs a nutritional punch with decent levels of protein, iron, copper and selenium. Soybeans also contain healthy amounts of these beneficial fats. One cup of soybeans provides more than 40 percent of the daily values. A great way to munch on soybeans is in their edamame form. As in Asian cuisine, the beans are steamed and salted and make a healthy appetizer.
    Bowl of tofu
  • Nuts

    Nuts may have a bad reputation because they are high in calories, but in limited quantities, they offer many nutritious benefits. They are great sources of the omega-3 fatty acids, especially walnuts, almonds and hazelnuts. Beyond that, they offer fiber, vitamin E, potassium and another heart-healthy fat: monounsaturated. Avoid roasted and salted nuts. Add them to your salads or have a handful as an easy snack.
  • Flaxseed Oil

    Flaxseed oil is the singular most potent source of omega-3 fatty acids. It's easy enough to add to your daily diet if you add a teaspoon to smoothies or oatmeal, mix it into dressings or marinades or swallow it whole. It's not recommended as a cooking oil, since it doesn't preserve well at higher temperatures. Flaxseed would make a great addition to anyone's diet because it also offers fiber and folate, and it's relatively low in calories compared to most oils.
  • Organic Milk

    Organic milk offers a much healthier alternative to regular milk for many reasons. Milk that comes from cows who are fed an organic diet have fewer chemicals and hormones but more omega-3 compounds. Using organic milk as a substitute for milk is a very convenient way to get more omega-3s into your diet, especially if you don't eat fish. Without tasting any difference, you can use it for your cereal, in pancake mixes and with macaroni and cheese.

    References & Resources