Why the source of your omega-3 matters
It's widely known that omega-3 fatty acids – known as "essential acids" because of their importance – benefit overall health in many ways. These compounds are the reason that fish is known as brain food, after all, and they have also been shown to boost mood, fight inflammation and much more. There are plenty of excellent sources of omega-3 that are probably already a part of your diet, including various fruits, vegetables and seeds. However, The Washington Post recently noted that not all omega-3s are created equal when it comes to nutritional benefits, so it may be time to get more selective.
In fact, this point was raised by an educated reader in response to an article the news outlet published on mood-boosting nutrients.
"While all types of omega-3s, plant-based and marine-based, are healthful, they are not the same and are not linked to the same health benefits," wrote Jennifer McGuire, MS, RD, of the National Fisheries Institute."The most powerful omega-3s are called EPA and DHA and are found almost exclusively in marine foods (seafood and seaweed)."
McGuire does make an excellent point. Chances are, if you've heard about a new study on the health benefits of omega-3, either EPA, DHA or both were the targeted strands. The omega-3 fatty acids derived from plants (known as ALA) are actually converted into these variants in the body, but you will be better able to reap the rewards of EPA and DHA by going straight to the source.
Of course, there are still plenty of reasons to include fresh produce in your diet. This article simply illustrates that seaweed – and the marine life that feeds on it – is truly a nutritional powerhouse. Seagreens® seaweed in particular is a natural multi-nutrient whole food containing all the vitamin groups, minerals and trace elements, including EPA and DHA.