Why Your Body Needs Omega-3 and Where You Can Get It
Omega-3s are fatty acids that your body must have to maintain proper health and brain function. The problem is our bodies do not have the ability to make it, which means we must get it from foods. You can get omega-3s from many kinds of fatty fish, but the most common are tuna and salmon. Studies have shown that a person should eat fish twice a week to maintain appropriate levels of omega-3 in their body.
What happens if you don't like fish? Well, certain nuts have omega-3s in them as well. Walnuts and flaxseed are common nuts that provide omega-3. I have been adding ground flaxseed to all of my baking and it really does give muffins and pancakes a sweet, nutty flavor which tastes so good. And it is good for us too! You can find ground flaxseed at your local grocery store or Trader Joe's.
Other foods that provide omega-3s are winter squash, beans, tofu and olive oil. You can also purchase omega-3 eggs in the grocery store. Chickens that produce omega-3 eggs are fed a different diet than other chickens. These diets consist of 10-20% flaxseed, which is loaded with omega-3's. I can get these eggs at Wal-Mart for about $2.59 a dozen, which isn't much more expensive than the price at the grocery store.
If you still can't get enough omega-3 from your diet, you can always take an herbal supplement. Omega-3, or Fish Oil pills can be found at any drug store, but I prefer to order mine online at a large discount. Make sure you get ones that say mercury free though. These supplements are easy to swallow and provide us with omega-3, on those days that we aren't getting it from our foods. I even cut the tip off the capsules and squirt the fish oil into yogurt or applesauce for the kids, as they can't swallow something as big as this. They have no idea it is there and I am making sure that they get the nutrients their brains and hearts need to stay healthy.
Making sure that you get enough Omega-3 in your diet is essential to proper health. According to WebMD, Omega-3 can decrease the risk of heart disease and stroke and also improve behavior problems that are a result of ADD or AD"HD. It can also boost the immune system and help protect us from illnesses such as Alzheimers. If these things don't convince you to add omega-3s into your diet, then I don't know what will.
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