The Benefits and Sources of Omega-3

I have a confession to make: I’ve never really taken Omega-3 supplements until very recently. For many people, that might be a shocking statement, and for others, you might be wondering why it’s such a big deal. And until recently, I was definitely one of the latter people. I never quite understood why Omega-3 was so important.

But unlike most nutrients that we need to maintain our health, Omega-3 can’t be made by our bodies from other fats or foods that we eat. On top of that, there are different types of Omega-3 fats. There’s ALA, which his found in foods such as green leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds like flax. And there are also two Omega-3s called EPA and DHA for short. These two are the ones that have a ton of health benefits.

But while ALA can be converted into EPA and DHA in the body, that conversion is not very efficient. The good news is that fish, seafood and algae are direct sources of EPA and DHA. However, if you’re like me and prefer a plant-based diet, you may not eat a lot of these particular foods.

The strongest evidence of Omega-3 health benefit is connected with heart health. I only found out about these very important health benefits of Omega-3 recently, and so I started taking a supplement.

But there’s a couple problems with my current supplement. And other than preferring a plant-based diet, one of the problems with my supplement is that distinct fishy aftertaste.

When we think of Omega-3, most of us think of fish oil. In fact, many nutritionists refer to the supplement as, ‘Omega-3 fish oil’. And that’s not surprising, since fish is one of the only dietary sources of the important EPA and DHA Omega-3 fats.

If you’re anything like me, you probably don’t enjoy the ‘fishy burps’ that some Omega-3 supplements can may induce. And if you’re like me, you might have that nagging feeling in the back of your mind as you take your fish oil supplement: how can I ‘go green’ and get the important EPA and DHA Omega-3 fats as well? Or you might be vegetarian or have a fish allergy. Whatever the case, this source of EPA and DHA may not be appealing to you.

Luckily, there is another source of Omega-3 EPA and DHA that’s an awesome alternative to fish oil — algae. Fish get their Omega-3 from microalgae, a plant source that’s also environmentally sustainable.

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Taking Omega-3 from a microalgae source, such as NutraVege, means that you’ll be getting a pure source of Omega-3 EPA and DHA, and you won’t have to deal with the possibility of those ‘fishy burps’ throughout the day. It also means that you’ll be able to get a direct source of Omega-3 EPA and DHA even if  you have an allergy to fish, are vegetarian, or prefer a plant-based diet like me. If you’re already taking an Omega-3 supplement like I am, and have been looking for one that lessens your environmental impact, algae derived ones like NutraVege are an amazing choice.

 

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For adults, the orange-strawberry flavoured 500mg dose of NutraVege will help maintain your health. However, if you’re looking for an even higher amount of EPA and DHA, the orange-cranberry 1000mg dose NutraVege 2X is best for you. Either way, these particular supplements are a great way to get those important Omega-3 fats EPA and DHA straight from a plant source!

Do you take an Omega-3 supplement? What do you look for in your supplement? Let us know in the comments!

Stephanie is Well.ca's Community Loyalty Coordinator. She's a seasoned blogger who's obsessed with green beauty, fashion, and other pretty things. She's on a journey toward wellness, healthy eating, and greening all aspects of her lifestyle!

8 Comments

  • Reply August 21, 2016

    Terry

    I’ve read that fishy tasting oil is a sign that your oil is rancid. Pure, fresh oil shouldn’t have a fishy aftertaste. Nordic Naturals is an excellent brand, the product I use has a natural strawberry flavouring which is actually pleasant, even with the comeback taste 😄

  • Reply October 20, 2016

    Robert

    Before taking any supplements you need to take some expert advice so that you do not get overdosed by them and invite unwanted diseases.Everyone has a different body type due to which they have different nutritional needs and muscle mass.

  • Reply December 15, 2016

    Frances Kotar

    I think the best way to get your Omegas is to eat fish at least twice a week, fishes like salmon or herring, or even tuna which contain a lot fo those EPA and DHA your’e talking about hereinabove. Get your vitamins and minerals the most natural way possible!

  • Reply December 20, 2016

    Anthony Johnson

    I always check with my doctor before I take something new.

  • Reply December 20, 2016

    Anthony Johnson

    Look before you leap is my motto.

  • Reply January 13, 2017

    Vyshivalshitsa

    Maximizing the benefits you get from omega- is highly dependent on how they are absorbed and transported throughout your body. Although these fatty acids are water soluble, they cannot be easily transported into your blood in their free form. Therefore, they need to be packaged in lipoprotein vehicles for them to be better absorbed into your bloodstream.

  • Reply April 15, 2017

    Yoko

    Not a comment, but a question. If one is taking Cod Liver Oil as a supplement,
    is it redundant to take Omega 3 as well?

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