Top 5 Omega 3 sources, which are not seafood

Omega 3 acids are extremely important not only for athletes and active people, but for everyone, even the average Kowalski. It is known that fish and seafood are their rich source, but not everyone will be a treat. Find out what to enter into your diet to supplement Omega 3 deficiencies.

Omega 3 acids – occurrence and types

Contrary to popular opinion, Omega 3 does not occur only in fish. We will also meet them in plant products. At the beginning, however, it is worth realizing why you should eat them. Omega 3 acids are involved in building nerve tissue, cell membranes, support the brain, and reduce the risk of ischemic heart disease. It is therefore recommended to eat fatty fish twice a week, which can be difficult even for a gourmet.

Types of omega 3 fatty acids

EPA – eicosapentaenoic acid

DHA – docosahexaenoic acid

ALA – alpha-linoleic acid

EPA and DHA are most common in meat and fish. In turn, ALA is fats derived from plants. Interestingly, the body is able to “produce” meat equivalents from the supplied plant acid. It is a process that does not run at one hundred percent efficiency, but it has been proven that eating 2 g ALA per day can compensate for shortages of other compounds.


  1. Walnuts

All known, by a few appreciated. In walnuts we will meet approx. 9 g of omega 3 per 100 g of product.

Conducted on four study groups with their use, they present themselves as follows

Group 1 – a diet based on a reduced amount of fat, with an increased portion of carbohydrates

Group 2 – diet based on increased amount of fat, with a reduced portion of carbohydrates

Group 3 – diet based on increased amounts of fat, reduced portion of carbohydrates, and walnuts, each of which subjects consumed at least 45 grams per day

Group 4 – without dietary intervention – a control sample


The experiment proved that each group lost weight at a similar pace, however, in the case of group 3, which was administered nuts, a significant reduction in blood cholesterol levels was observed, with the simultaneous increase of this positive, designated as HDL. The 6 months that the experiment lasted proves that walnuts are a great addition to breakfasts, salads and even snacks.


  1. Hemp oil

It is not very popular with us, but its properties really amaze. It is said that you can get up to 2 g of ALA from one cannabis seed. If someone decides to use the specifics, it is worth remembering that it is an offer for cold dishes, like salads, sauces, where it will not have to deal with high temperature.


  1. Linseed

Seemingly known, supposedly popular, and yet avoided by a wide arch. Each bucket of linseed is about 1.5 g of omega 3, which you do not have. In addition, you can count on supplementing the deficiencies of vitamin B1, magnesium and manganese. Remember that the casings of flaxseed are not digested, and to take advantage of the wealth that the plant offers us, we must crush or grind them. In this form, we can successfully add them to cereals, cocktails and even pancakes.


  1. Green soy

Basically, it is immature soybeans that are served after cooking. It is estimated that a cup of boiled soy is about 22 g of protein and 1 g of ALA. In addition to omega 3 and protein, soy has a huge amount of vitamins and minerals necessary for the body’s functioning

Green soy can be successfully added to hummus and salads.


  1. Chia seeds

Chia beans have recently made a real sensation. They appear in breakfast, in the form of pudding, as an addition to flakes, and as a coating. An interesting property of grains is their gel-like consistency that they obtain under the influence of liquids. Unlike linseed, we do not have to take care of their powdering. They will be easily digested and the digestive system will gain an extra portion of fiber

In addition to omega 3, which is as much as 18g in 100g of product, we can count on a powerful vitamin bomb. It is not without reason that Chia has become a hit of recent years


OMEGA-3 acids – an exceptional building block for our cells

Omega-3 acids help prevent diseases, preserve youth and improve mood. Thanks to the right amount of omega-3 fatty acids, you will avoid, for example, macular degeneration, Alzheimer’s disease, allergies or heart disease Omega-3 acids are necessary especially for pregnant and small women check what properties omega-3 acids have.

Omega-3 acids are an exceptional building block of our cells, thanks to which the cell membrane works better, and it improves all life processes.” It is impossible to calculate all the benefits that omega-3 fatty acids give us. Omega-3 fatty acids belong to the group of essential unsaturated fatty acids (EFA), specifically polyunsaturated fatty acids, and we distinguish two omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Omega-3 includes linoleic acid (ALA), which is a substrate for the production of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and its recommended intake is 0.5%.


Omega-3 acids can protect against cancer

Omega-3 acids can protect against the development of cancer, but those from fish are more effective (even eight times) than those from plants – convince scientists from the Canadian University of Guelph in the” Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry “.

The study was carried out on mice, rodents being a model of particularly aggressive form of HER-2 breast cancer, which afflicts 25% of women, received three types of omega 3 acids.

It turned out that the exposure to omega 3 acids, which come from fish, translated into a reduction in tumor size by 60-70% and a 30% lower risk of metastases. To achieve the same result, it was necessary to increase the dose of acids omega 3 of vegetable origin.


Omega-3 acids help brain work

Whether we systematically supplement the omega-3 levels, the effectiveness of thinking, understanding, memorizing and even creativity throughout our lives depends largely on the people who eat a lot of fish, in older age they are distinguished by their mental sharpness, and less frequently for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

They affect the formation and work of the brain, from the onset of fetal life.” It turns out that a woman who consumes the right amount of omega-3 during pregnancy generates a smarter and bigger child Omega-3 fatty acids improve the brain’s blood supply and improve the flow of nerve impulses between gray and white matter, therefore children who consume the right amount of omega-3 acids develop better, have no problems concentrating and are more efficiently motivated.


Omega-3 acids improve eyesight

Omega-3 acids are a component of the retina, and their deficiency in the mother’s diet threatens retinopathy of premature babies (this condition can even lead to complete loss of vision.) Children who do not eat fish are usually more susceptible to vision defects and see worse. omega-3 in old age may be the reason for macular degeneration, which is the most common cause of blindness in adults.



The right ratio Omega 3 and 6 is the foundation!

To be healthy, we need omega-3 and omega-6 in the right proportions.The ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 should be 15 or 16. Unfortunately, the diet of the average Pole does not meet such requirements.Why?We eat too much vegetable fats, a source of omega-6, and not enough fish, rich in omega-3.Meanwhile, an excess of omega-6 destroys the beneficial effects of omega-3.


Omega-3 acids support the work of the heart

Studies show that eating more than one fish meal per week reduces the risk of death from heart disease by more than 50% (compared to people who do not eat fish at all or only eat once a month).

In the case of people who have had a heart attack, this risk decreases by 42%.” Omega-3 acids counteract arrhythmias, which is why people with high blood levels die less than twice those who lack these acids (sudden arrhythmia when infarcts are life-threatening).


Omega-3 have the ability to thin the blood and prevent the blood cells from sticking to damaged vessel walls, preventing clots and congestion.

They also counteract inflammatory processes in the arteries leading to their sclerosis, lower the level of bad cholesterol (LDL) and raise the level of good (HDL), reducing the rate of atherosclerosis.


Omega-3 acids strengthen bones

We need omega-3 acids to have healthy bones, protect against arthritis, relieve pain and stiffness associated with rheumatic diseases, and facilitate the absorption of calcium, which is why they are irreplaceable in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis.


Omega-3 acids for allergies and resistance

Recent studies confirm that omega-3s prevent and treat allergies and increase the body’s natural immunity.

There are many indications that women who eat a lot of fish are less exposed to breast and uterine cancer and men to prostate cancer. Both sexes are less likely to have pancreatic cancer.


Worth knowing

Omega-3 acids – dosage

EPA and DHA, due to the multidirectional positive effects on the human body proved in clinical studies, have been included in the dietary recommendations constructed by various global organizations.

EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) 2010

– Adults – 250 mg / day EPA / DHA

– Pregnant / lactating – 250 mg EPA + DHA / day + 100-200 mg DHA

ISSFAL (International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids) 2004

– 500 mg / day EPA / DHA recommended for adults in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases

AHA (American Heart Association) 2002

– Two portions of fatty fish per week – for general health

– 1000 mg / day ω-3 EPA / DHA – patients with heart disease

– 2000 to 4000 mg / day ω-3 EPA / DHA – patients with hypertriglyceridemia

USDA (US Dept of Agriculture) and HHS (Department of Health and Human Services)

– General population – about 8 portions a week of various seafood, providing on average 250 mg of EPA and DHA per day

– Pregnant and lactating women – at least 8-12 servings of various seafood, with the lowest mercury content

Acids in Human Nutrition 2010

– Adults – 250 mg / day EPA / DHA

– Pregnant and breastfeeding women – 300 mg / day EPA / DHA, of which 200 mg / day should be DHA


Omega-3 acids important in pregnancy

Due to the special influence of omega-3 on fetal development and its good health in later life, Polish experts recommend omega-3 administration to pregnant women and children from the age of 6. Why? Because pregnant women and children up to 7 should mean that they only have to choose those that do not come from breeding and do not contain heavy metals (they are more than others exposed to lead poisoning.) Because it is difficult to check where the fish comes from and why what’s in it  “sitting “, better to reach for tran.


Omega 3 acids are primarily found in the:


crustaceans, e.g. shrimps




vegetable oils (linseed oil, peanut oil and rapeseed oil)


A valuable source, both Omega 3 and Omega 6, are high quality soft margarines, whose main ingredient are vegetable oils.

It should be remembered that EFAs are destroyed during heating, so Omega 3 and Omega 6 perform their functions when they are not frying.


Worth knowing

Features of good omega-3.How do you choose omega-3 acids to be of good quality?
  1. From small fish

Omega-3 acids should be obtained from small fish, because because of their short life they accumulate much less heavy metals than large fish.

  1. Certified places of fishing

The recommended places for fishing are the seas of the southern hemisphere, where lower intensity of industry means less pollution in water.Certified reservoirs in the South Pacific are an optimal source of omega-3 acids.

  1. Short production time

Due to the ease with which fish oil may be subject to unfavorable oxidation processes, i.e. rancidity, the conditions of production and the time which passes from the moment of fishing to oil acquisition are important.It is best when it is less than 36 hours from fishing to the production of fish oil.

  1. Crystal clear oil color

The brighter the oil color, the higher the quality of the product, which indicates that it is not rancid, and as a result “does not bounce off the fish”.To measure the color of the oil, Gardner’s 18-degree scale is used and the lower the scale, the fresher the oil, the better its quality.

  1. A delicate taste and smell

Fish oil should have a delicate fresh smell – oil that smells too much with ‘fish’ may indicate rancidity and low quality of the raw material.The content of oxidized omega-3 acids is measured by the TOTOX value (total oxidation).The maximum limit is 28 and the lower the value on this scale, the less oxidized omega-3 contains oil.You will see the physical properties with the naked eye and feel the product trying.

  1. The natural form of omega-3

Omega-3 acids contained in the product should be in the form of triglycerides (TG), in the form as in fish, which is better absorbed.Fatty acids in the form of ethyl esters (EE) are less well absorbed.

  1. Certificates and tests

Omega-3 acid should have the certificates of recognized organizations setting standards for the quality assessment of omega-3 acids, e.g. GOED.


Problems with reading? They will help omega-3 acids

Do you have a healthy, smart child who reads less than his peers? There is a simple way to enrich your children’s diet with valuable fatty acids.

British researchers suggest to supplement with DHA (omega-3 acids) the diet of children who have problems with reading and behavior. These kinds of acids are present in marine fish, seafood and algae. In studies that allowed for a conclusion about the beneficial effects of these substances on children’s behavior and mental fitness, algae-based supplementation was used.

Nowadays, most people suffer from deficiencies of omega-3 acids, substances that the human body can not produce itself. These deficiencies can cause health problems affecting the body and mind.

It has already been stated that these acids can positively affect behavior and learning ability in children with nervous system disorders or those with ADHD.

Now, it turns out that healthy children can also benefit from taking omega-3 (DHA) acids. The trial based on the administration of DHA supplements and a placebo (substance with no effect on the body) to healthy children proved this . The trial lasted 16 weeks.

The results of the study, daily use of omega-3 supplements allowed poorly reading children (who are in the group of the least readers) to improve their skills in this field. The parents of these children also found a significant improvement in the behavior of their children.


When buying fish, choose the ones that contain the most omega-3 fatty acids

Atlantic herring – 4.3 g omega-3 in 100 g

sprat – 3.89 g of omega-3 in 100 g

salmon – 3.57 g omega-3 in 100 g

mackerel – 2.32 g of omega-3 in 100 g

eel – 2.25 g omega-3 in 100 g

sardine – 1.52 g omega-3 in 100 g

A good source of omega-3 is olive oil, in which the proportions of omega-6 to omega-3 are perfect and amount to 41. Unfortunately, the body can not use omega-3 if too much omega-6 is in the diet! Therefore, you can not count on the fact that the body will use omega-3 acids in sunflower, corn or grape seed oil, because these oils have very disturbed proportions of both types of valuable quis – the amount of omega-6 acids exceeds the amount of omega acids in them -3 from over 100 to over 300 times!

Other vegetable oils with the right proportion of omega acids are rapeseed and linseed oil, but these oils should be used cold in order to preserve their pro-health properties.

In pharmacies, preparations with omega-3 acids are available. It is worth buying those from a reputable manufacturer!

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Cortisol – friend or foe?

 We usually associate cortisol as a bad hormone, which slows down slowly, builds muscle tissue, and regenerates. However, it is necessary for the proper functioning of our body. Cortisol is a steroid hormone that prepares the body to fight stress associated with illness, trauma, and fear – it raises sugar in these situations, increases the frequency of breathing, and speeds up the heartbeat. It is our protection, which in itself says that it works best in exceptional situations.

When its increased secretion is excessive then our body falls out of balance – sleep problems, anxiety, lack of regeneration, nervousness. It is also responsible for muscle catabolism by reducing protein synthesis. It can therefore be said that it has the opposite effect on testosterone in this regard. Of course, cortisol does not have only a negative effect – it helps to reduce inflammation.

The level of cortisol during the day changes. It is highest in the morning, then it decreases during the day. It is not a gradual decrease, because the stimuli we have during the day can affect it, for example, training, stress at work. That is why it is so important to avoid overtraining or permanent contact with stressful factors, because then our training goals may go into oblivion.

How to prevent the maintenance of high cortisol? How to control it?

Besides taking care of an appropriate lifestyle, it is also worth taking a look at diet and supplementation. One of our allies is fish oil. In addition to regulating cortisol levels, it also helps to burn body fat and improves overall health. Many studies have shown that regular fish oil supplementation significantly reduces cortisol levels by managing the level of proinflammatory levels of cytokines and norepinephrine.

Quite recently, a group of Italian scientists from Universita Politecnica delle Marche recruited 31 alcoholics for the study. The aim of the study was to check what dose of fish oil will affect the level of their cortisol. This group was chosen because at the moment when the alcoholic stops drinking, his level of stress hormone increases significantly. The group was divided in half – the first one received 21 days a capsule daily from 1g fish oil 252 mg DHA and 60 mg EPA and the other, a placebo. The results revealed that in the first group, cortisol levels decreased, anxiety and stress also decreased, and the cortisol production remained unchanged in the placebo group.

There is a significant difference between alcoholics and healthy people in many biological processes, but the effect of fish oil on cortisol levels in both groups has had positive effects.

Research has suggested that fish oil supplementation also applies to athletes, allowing them to fully utilize their exercise potential. As previously mentioned, cortisol rises with increased physical effort and long-term maintenance of high levels lowers anabolic possibilities.

When is best to supplement fish oil? Research suggests that the optimal time is the evening, for example, for dinner or just before bedtime.