Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fats that you should get from the diet. These extremely healthy fats have essential benefits for your body and brain.

However, most people who consume a standard Western diet do not consume enough omega-3 fats. Not even close.

This is the beginner’s guide to omega-3 fatty acids.

If you do not eat fish, supplement your diet with Zinzino Balance oil, which is a highly concentrated source of omega-3.

What are omega-3 fatty acids?

Omega-3 fatty acids are a family of polyunsaturated fats that we must obtain from the diet. They are also known as n-3 or ω-3 fatty acids.

They are called essential fatty acids because they are necessary for health, but the body cannot produce them on its own like other fats.

The polyunsaturated part means that fatty acids have several double bonds in their chemical structure. Omega-6 fatty acids are an alternative type of polyunsaturated fat.

The nomenclature convention “omega” has to do with the placement of the double bond in the fatty acid molecule. The omega-3 have the first double bond located at 3 carbon atoms of the omega end.

1. EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid)

EPA is an omega-3 fatty acid of 20 carbons long. It is found mainly in fatty fish, seafood and fish oil.

This fatty acid has many essential functions. The most important thing is that it is used to form signaling molecules called eicosanoids. This can lead to a reduction of inflammation.

It has been found that EPA is particularly effective against certain mental conditions, especially depression.

2. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid)

DHA is a 22-carbon long omega-3 fatty acid. It is found mainly in fatty fish, seafood, fish oils, and algae.

The main role of DHA is to function as a structural component in cell membranes, particularly in nerve cells in the brain and eyes. It constitutes around 40% of the polyunsaturated fats in the brain.

DHA is very important during pregnancy and lactation. It is undeniably crucial for the nervous system during development, and breast milk contains significant amounts of DHA.

3. ALA (alpha-linolenic acid)

ALA is an omega-3 fatty acid of 18 carbons long. It is found in high-fat vegetable foods, especially flaxseeds, chia seeds and nuts.

Despite being the most compound to find omega-3 fat in the diet, ALA is not very active in the body. It needs to be converted to EPA and DHA to be active.

Unfortunately, this process is highly inefficient in humans. Only about 5% becomes EPA, and only 0.5% becomes DHA.

For this reason, ALA should never be relied upon as the sole source of omega-3. Most of the ALA you eat will just be used for energy.

Health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids

  1. Blood fat (triglycerides). Fish oil supplements can reduce high triglyceride levels. Having high levels of this fat in the blood puts you at risk for heart disease.
  2. Development of the baby. DHA seems to be important for visual and neurological development in babies.
  3. Rheumatoid arthritis. Fish oil supplements (EPA + DHA) can reduce stiffness and joint pain. Omega-3 supplements also seem to increase the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory medications.
  4. Asthma. A diet high in omega-3 reduces inflammation, a key component in asthma. But more studies are needed to show whether fish oil supplements improve lung function or reduce the amount of medication a person needs to control the condition.
  5. Depression. Some researchers have found that people who eat foods with high levels of omega-3 have lower levels of depression. Fish oil also seems to increase the effects of antidepressants and may help the depressive symptoms of bipolar disorder.
  6. ADHD. Some studies show that fish oil can reduce the symptoms of ADHD in some children and improve their mental abilities, such as thinking, remembering and learning.

Further research is needed in this area, and omega-3 supplements should not be used as a primary treatment.

  1. Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Some research suggests that omega-3s may help protect against Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, and have a positive effect on the gradual loss of memory related to aging. But that is not sure yet.

Should you take an omega-3 supplement?

The best way to ensure optimal consumption of omega-3 is to eat fatty fish at least twice a week.

However, if you do not eat a lot of fatty fish or seafood, then it is probably a good idea to take a supplement.

In fact, most studies on the benefits of omega-3s use supplements, so they can definitely be beneficial.

Good supplements with EPA and DHA include fish oil and Zinzino Balance Oil. For vegetarians and vegans, it is recommended to take a DHA supplement made from algae.

When it comes to omega-3 supplements, there are many options and not all are good. Some supplements may even contain harmful compounds due to pollution at sea.

Safety and side effects

When it comes to nourishment, more is not always better. As with many other nutrients, there is a limit to how much you should take.

According to the FDA, it is safe to take up to 2000 mg of EPA and DHA combined per day of the supplements.

In high doses, omega-3 can cause thinning of the blood and excessive bleeding. Talk to your doctor if you have a bleeding disorder or if you are taking blood thinning medicine.

Some omega-3 supplements, especially fish oil, can also cause digestive problems and unpleasant burps of fish oil.

Another thing to keep in mind is that so many omega-3 supplements are high in calories. Cod liver oil is also very high in vitamin A, which can be dangerous in large doses.

Make sure you read and follow the dosage instructions.

Foods High in Omega-3 Fatty Acids

1. Soy (Roasted)

Not many people know that this vegetable source is quite rich in Omega-3 fats. Soy has ALA, which promotes heart health.

In fact, having a slightly cooked soy bowl contains more omega-3 fats than some cold water fish!

2. Nuts

Add nuts in your favorite dishes to the oven, sprinkle them in salads and cereals or have them as they are, the nuts are excellent in all aspects.

This nut not only gives you multiple vascular benefits but also helps you maintain your ideal weight over time.

3. Salmon

Not only is it rich in vitamin D, but it is also a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, proteins and phosphorus. Salmon contains high levels of omega-3 fats, EPA and DHA.

These fats provide a number of cardiovascular ease, such as reducing inflammation. Ingesting salmon twice or three times a week can reduce the risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, arrhythmia and embolism.

4. Canola oil

It is touted as the healthiest salad and cooking oil. It is cheaper than olive oil and can withstand high cooking temperatures.

Due to its low content of saturated fat, it is said to be beneficial to our health.

5. Sardines

They are small and greasy, and less expensive than other types of fish. With higher sodium content, they can balance their food with fruits and vegetables low in sodium.

Generally, they are eaten from a can/jug as a snack or can be added to sandwiches, salads or pizzas.

They would still know very well and would provide your body with a little comfort.

6. Chia seeds

Chia seeds are not only rich in omega 3 but also in vitamins, minerals and dietary fibers. Loaded with calcium, protein, and magnesium, these seeds reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, improve exercise performance and also provide health benefits to the brain.

7. Mackerel

These small, greasy fish not only taste delicious, they are also incredibly healthy.

In addition to being rich in omega 3, this fish has a high content of nutrients and vitamins B6 and B12.

8. Flax seed

Being the richest source of Omega 3 fats, flax seeds are considered a superfood. Often ground or used to produce oil, these small seeds help fight cancer, reduce sugar cravings and promote weight loss.

9. White beans

Beans are not only a great source of fiber that fights belly fat, but a single cup provides almost an entire day of omega-3.

The beans of the Navy are full of satiating proteins and brimming with vitamins and minerals.

10. Anchovies

The debate about the ingredients of the pizza is solved. While salmon, tuna, halibut, and other popular fish take over all the omega-3 glory, the humble anchovy is often forgotten.

But only a couple of slices of anchovy pizza take you to more than half of your daily quota. The super fish is also rich in calcium and potassium which both essential minerals to lose weight, as well as in vitamin A.

If you are adventurous, eat them with the bones that are still inside.

A 2015 study in the Food Chemistry Journal found that the traditional way of eating anchovies produces eight times more calcium and twice as much iron as the cleaned deboning option. This is great news if you are not a milk fan and you need more calcium.

11. Mustard seed

A teaspoon of ground mustard provides 100 milligrams of omega-3, plus a serious potential to burn fat.

Scientists at the Oxford Polytechnic Institute in England discovered that one teaspoon of hot things was enough to increase metabolism by up to 25 percent for several hours after eating.

The researchers attribute the benefits of weight loss to allyl isothiocyanates, compounds that give mustard its characteristic flavor.

You can use ground mustard seeds as if they were black pepper. Put a pinch on your salmon for a double dose of omega-3 goodness!

12. Eggs

Eggs appear on many of our “best lists” because they are full of proteins, vitamins, antioxidants and a nutrient that fights fat called choline.

Eggs enriched with omega-3 are deposited by chickens that are fed flax seeds, chia seeds, and fish oil.

Frequent Asked Question About Omega-3

Here are quick answers to some common questions that frequently arise about omega-3 fatty acids and fish oils.

1. What is the best form of fish oil?

Most fish oils are in the form of ethyl ester.

If you do not eat fish, supplement your diet with Zinzino Balance oil, which is a highly concentrated source of omega-3.

2. What happens to the excess of omega-3 in the body?

They will basically be used as a source of calories, like other fats.

3. Can you cook with omega-3 oils?

It is not recommended to cook with them, as they are high in polyunsaturated fats, which can easily damage high temperatures.

For this reason, you should also store them in a dark and cool place and not buy in large quantities because they may perish.