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Omega 3: from what sources can it be recovered?

Omega 3: from what sources can it be recovered?

By Simona Brigandi

Nutritionist Corner – The virtues of omega-3 fatty acids are no longer a mystery to anyone. But from what sources should we recover it? The protective effects on vascular health are well known, and it is beneficial for the heart and arteries. However, a common and pernicious doubt remains: whether animal sources of omega-3 or plant sources should be preferred.
In fact, we often ask ourselves where we should take Omega-3 from to ensure our health is protected. Plant foods mainly contain a class of omega-3 called ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) which is mainly found in walnuts, flaxseeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and cold-pressed soybean oil. Fish, especially blue fish, are high in long-chain omega-3s, such as EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Our body is able to partially convert ALA (alpha lipoic acid) into long-chain omega-3 fatty acids.

Moreover, these plant foods are an excellent source of trace elements and fiber and have a good protein content. Omega-3 are “essential” fatty acids that the body cannot produce, so they must be ingested through the diet and the correct intake of these nutrients is achieved, which is set by the Italian Society for Human Nutrition between 1 and 4.5 grams per day.

However, some studies show that long-chain omega-3 fatty acids found in fish have an essential role in a preventive diet. Even if our body is able to partially convert Ala into EPA and DHA, the Italian Society for Human Nutrition in the latest update of the “LARN” (Reference Intake Levels of Nutrients and Energy for the Italian Population) for 2014 has also included a daily requirement of EPA and DHA that should be obtained From diet. In fact, recent studies confirm the importance of these fats for the development of the nervous system and cardiovascular health.

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Tips during pregnancy and breastfeeding

Furthermore, during pregnancy and breastfeeding, you have to deal with increased DHA requirements of 100-200 mg per day. National and international guidelines agree to define a health-preventive diet as one that favors polyunsaturated fats, and recommends consuming fish at least 3 times a week, preferably grilled, baked or steamed, to maintain as much of its omega content as possible. 3, daily. Dried fruits and oil seeds.

Good consumption of dried fruits has been shown to be associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and mortality. Dried fruits and oilseeds can be added to salads or eaten as a snack or for breakfast.