Omega-3s are Part of a Healthy Diet
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
A complete, healthy diet should include Omega-3s, or EPA and DHA are also known as “essential fatty acids”. We must have them to enjoy good health, and we cannot produce them in our bodies.
Richest sources of EFA and DHA, Deep water, cold water fish like:
• Trout, and;
Krill is also a major player in providing some of the highest levels of omega-3s. As with all fish, other foods, and supplements you eat, be sure of the source, and the processing. For example: krill shells contain fluoride, which is toxic in large quantities; some fish contain high levels of heavy metals.
Other fish such as, pike, carp, and haddock contain EPA and DHA, in lesser quantities, but like salmon, trout and mackerel, may be easier to include in a healthy diet.
Farm raised fish do not contain the same levels of omega-3s as their wild cousins. They are still a good source of protein, but when you can, go for the fresh fish raised in its natural habitat. There are other issues as well with farm raised fish, so find out more about the operation and what they feed the fish.
Other sources of omega-3s are flax seed oil and hemp seed oil. These are not as effective as other sources but are adequate for those who don’t have a place for seafood in their diet.Why Do I Need Omega-3s?
What makes these oils so special? Both EPA and DHA are normal constituents of our cells. They are especially abundant in:
• Brain cells;
• Nerve relay stations;
• Visual receptors (retinas);
• Adrenal glands;
• Sex glands.
Some other potential benefits of EPA and DHA include:
• Platelets- EPA and DHA help to keep blood platelets moving freely which helps reduce the possibilities of clots;
• Arteries- EPA and DHA help to keep the arteries clear and open;
• Blood and Triglycerides- EPA and DHA can help lower high triglycerides considerably, and lower LDL cholesterol some as well, although not as much. As most people know, high cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL, and VLDL levels are associated with cardiovascular disease; high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, heart and kidney failure, stroke and heart attack;
• Blood pressure-EPA can help to lower blood pressure;
• Omega-3s have been shown in laboratory studies to inhibit tumor growth, and to keep cancer cells from spreading.
Overall, we want to eat more foods that help to promote longevity, fish is one of those foods to help fill out a healthy diet. When you realize that the examples of these benefits are there if we look, it makes sense to listen and apply the information to our lives.One of these examples is the Inuit population of Eskimos whose diet consists of 39% fat, providing almost 60% of their daily calories (of which more than one-tenth is EPA and DHA), but very little fiber. Yet, as a whole, their population was virtually free of disease of fatty degeneration. Unfortunately, this has changed as modern food habits and technology has taken root even in these remote regions.
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