When talking about a healthy balanced diet vitamins and minerals are often taken into consideration, but many times Omega-3 Fatty Acids are observed. Omega 3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids and have various health benefits. Most of these benefits are related to cardiovascular health and proper functioning of brain.
What are Omega-3 Fatty Acids?
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fatty acids. The human body is unable to produce these fatty acids thus, you need to consume foods rich in Omega 3 to complete the daily requirement.
There are 3 different types of omega 3s –
- ALA (alpha-linolenic acid)
- DHA (docosahexaeonic acid)
- EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid)
Rich sources of EPA and DHA are seafood, while ALA is commonly found in plant sources, nuts, and seeds.
The best way to add omega 3 to your daily diet is by taking omega 3 capsules. You can easily buy them online and have them. Do consult your doctor before taking omega 3 capsules or Omega 3 Fish Oil.
The daily requirement of omega 3 for a healthy adult is 250 -500 mg. But still consulting a health expert or a certified physician is advised before consumption.
Rich Sources of Omega 3
Given below is the list of foods which are rich sources of omega 3.
- Cod liver oil
- Chia Seeds
Omega 3 Benefits
Find out top 5 Omega-3 Benefits for Health and Fitness.
- Helps improve Cardiovascular Health
In the fast paced lifestyle of today, stress has become a part and parcel of life. Thus, taking care of your heart is of prime importance. Heart attacks and strokes are two of the leading causes of deaths.
There have been several researches that show that communities which eat large quantities of fish have lower risk of heart attack. This is because of the high amount of omega 3 fatty acids in fish which make it ideal for heart health. Research also shows that omega 3 fatty acids reduce the risk of abnormal heartbeats which can lead to sudden death.
People with coronary artery disease may not get the daily requirement through diet alone and should take omega 3 capsules.
Omega 3 benefit for heart health include the following –
- They cause 15 -30% reduction in the amount of triglycerides
- Raises (HDL) good cholesterol level in the body
- Lowers (LDL) bad cholesterol level in the body
- Help reduce blood pressure
- Keeps arteries smooth and free from plaque damage which causes arteries to shrink
- Prevents clumping of blood platelets, thus preventing clot formation
- Stabilizes Blood Sugar Levels
Omega 3 fatty acids are known for their ability to fight against autoimmune diseases. If you’re someone with type I diabetes, then including omega 3 fish oil or omega 3 capsules in your daily diet will be beneficial.
Research has shown that intake of optimum level of omega 3 fatty acids help to stabilize blood sugar level. When you take these supplements, you also reduce the risk of diabetes.
- Alleviates Menstrual Pain
When it is that time of the month and you’re in pain due to menstrual cramps, popping a pill seems to be the best solution. But that would do a lot of harm to your body in the long run.
Adopting natural methods to alleviate menstrual pain is a better idea. Research shows that girls and women who regularly take omega 3 capsules or omega 3 fish oil have milder menstrual cramps as compared to those who don’t take these supplements.
Make sure you talk to your gynecologist before taking omega 3 supplements.
- Improves Eye Health
DHA is a type of omega 3 and it is a major structural component of the brain and the retina. DHA deficiency can cause vision related problems.
Getting enough omega 3 will not just improve eye health, but it also reduces macular degeneration, the leading cause of permanent eye damage and blindness.
- Promotes Brain Health During Pregnancy and Early Life
When you’re pregnant, you need to take care of your own health and the health of the little one growing inside you as well. Omega-3s are crucial for brain growth and development in infants.
DHAs account for 40% of polyunsaturated fatty acids in brain, and 60% in the retina of the eye. Thus, infants who are fed formula food enriched with DHA have better brain functions and eyesight.
Taking omega 3 rich diet or omega 3 capsules is related to a lot of health benefits for the child –
- Higher intelligence
- Less behavioral problems
- Decreased risk of developmental delay
- Decreased risk of autism and cerebral palsy
- Better social and communication skills.
Apart from these benefits, there are some other benefits as well.
- Reduces symptoms of metabolic syndromes
- Fights inflammation
- Helps reduce fat in the liver
- Improves bone and joint health
- Reduces asthma in children
- Improves sleep
- Helpful in preventing against age related mental decline and Alzheimer’s disease
- Good for your skin
- Reduces the risk of cancer
- Fights autoimmune diseases
Omega 3 deficiency is quite common, especially in vegetarians and vegans. You can easily take omega 3 capsules or Omega 3 Fish Oil to meet the daily requirements and avoid deficiency. Some of the common symptoms of omega 3 deficiency are –
- Mood swings
- Joint pain
- Poor memory
- Dry and flaky skin
- Autoimmune diseases
- Heart problems
Taking supplements is a great way to include that particular element in your diet. But make sure you always consult your doctor before taking any health supplements. Omega 3 benefits are plenty, but there can be some cases where it reacts with some medications that you already take, so better be safe and ask your doctor.