Omega 3 fatty acids are essential for eye and brain health, have important anti-inflammatory properties, and improve cholesterol ratios. Back when we hunted, foraged and fished for our meals our primary sources of Omega 3 fatty acids were (and still are if you hunt, fish and forage for your food) salmon, trout, sardines, oysters, seaweed, nuts and seeds, and some leafy greens. There is some evidence that meat and fat from game and grass-fed animals have appreciable amounts of Omega 3 fatty acids.
There are three types of Omega 3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA which come from animals and ALA which comes from plants. DHA and EPA specifically have a large and robust body of scientific research exploring their role in our bodies. The research on ALA is just as robust, however the findings show it not to be as beneficial as DHA and EPA. So the type of Omega 3 matters.
Recommended supplementation amounts vary based on the reason for supplementation. For example, if your goal is general health then 250mg is adequate. However, if you're at risk for heart disease, the American Heart Association recommends 1g for high risk individuals. Pregnant woman are encouraged to take only 200mg per day. The dose matters (and it makes the poison) and more is not necessarily better.
If you're not eating salmon, trout, sardines, oysters or other delicious fish twice a week, you might consider fish oil supplementation.
Salmon is tasty and a great way to ensure you are getting all the benefits of Omega 3. Check out this excellent New York Times guide on how to cook salmon by Florence Fabricant.
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