Where is omega 3 found in food?
Omega-3 acid is available naturally in some foods, or in fortified foods to which it is added; sufficient amounts of this acid can be consumed by eating a variety of them, including the following:
- Fish and other seafood: especially fatty fish in cold waters. Such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, herring, and sardines.
- Nuts and seeds: such as flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts. Vegetable oils: such as flaxseed oil, soybean oil, and canola oil.
- Fortified foods: such as eggs, milk, juices, milk, soy drinks, and some types of infant formula.
- Other foods: contain small amounts of omega-3, such as meat, dairy products from grass-fed animals, hemp seeds, and vegetables, such as spinach, Brussels sprouts, and watercress.
Animal sources of omega 3
The following table shows the content of some animal sources per gram of the various forms of omega-3 acids; EPA, DHA, and ALA:
|Canned salmon (85 grams)||0.04||0.63||0.28|
|Cooked herring (85 grams)||—||0.94||0.77|
|Sardines Canned ( 85 grams)||—||0.74||0.45|
|Cooked Mackerel (85 grams)||—||0.59||0.43|
|Mayonnaise Sauce (1 tablespoon)||0.74||—||—|
|Cooked oysters (85 grams)</ small>||0.14||0.23||0.30|
|Cooked shrimp fish (85 grams)||—||0.12||0.12|
|Canned tuna (85 grams)||—||0.17||0.02|
|Cooked cod (85 grams)||—||0.10||0.04|
|eggs cooked (1 egg)||—||0.03||—|
|Cooked chicken breast (85 grams)||—||0.02||0.01|
|Low Fat Milk 1% (1 cup)||0.01||—||—|
Plant sources of Omega 3
The following table shows the content of some plant sources per gram of omega-3 acids. EPA, DHA, ALA
|Flaxseed Oil (1 tablespoon)||7.26||—||—|
|Chia seeds (28 grams)||5.06||—||—|
|English walnuts (28 grams)||2.57||—||—|
|Flaxseed (1 tablespoon)||2.35||—||—|
|Canola oil ( 1 tablespoon)||1.28||—||—|
|Soybean Oil (1 tablespoon)||0.92||—||—|
|Black Walnut (28 grams)||0.76||—||—|
|Frozen Edamame Beans (1/2 cup)||0.28||—||—|
|Canned White Beans (1/2 cup)||0.10||—||—|
|Whole wheat bread (1 slice of bread)||0.04||—||—|
Other sources of Omega 3
- Fish oil supplements that contain EPA and DHA.
- fish liver oil supplements; Such as cod liver oil, which contains EPA and DHA, and some vitamins in quantities that may vary from one product to another, such as vitamin A and vitamin D, but it should be noted that consuming these two types of vitamins in excessive amounts may be associated with some harmful effects.
- Krill oil contains EPA and DHA.
- algae oils; They are plant sources that contain DHA, and some may also contain EPA.
- flaxseed oil; which contains ALA.
An overview of omega 3
Omega-3 is an unsaturated fatty acid, which can be added to the diet from various food sources, as the body cannot manufacture it on its own, such as fish; it is available in the form of eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA, docosahexaenoic acid, and DHA, and some plant sources; Which is available in the form of alpha-linolenic acid and ALA, although long-chain omega-3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid can be manufactured from alpha-linolenic acid in the body, it is recommended to consume foods rich in EPA and DHA; Due to the low efficiency of manufacturing this acid.
The body needs omega-3 acid to help with some vital functions, such as; The formation of brain cells, and the maintenance of heart health, and it is worth noting that omega-3 constitutes approximately 5%-10% of the total calories needed by the body.
Recommended daily intake of omega-3
Many groups have made recommendations regarding adequate intake of omega-3 fatty acids, based on age, health, and other factors. Here are the recommended amounts of omega-3 according to the US National Institutes of Health:
|From birth to 12 months *||0.5 gr|
|From 1 - 3 years**||0.7 gr|
|From 4 - 8 years**||0.9 gr|
|Females 9-13 years old**||1.0 gr|
|Males 9-13 years old**||1.2 gr|
|Females from 14 years old to over 51 years old**||1.1 g|
|Males from 14 years old to over 51 years old**||1.6 g|
|Pregnant woman between the ages of 14-50**||1.4 g|
|Breastfeeding women between the ages of 14 and 50**||1.3 gr|