The ABCs of Omega-3s

With supermarket staples promoting their omega-3 credentials, learn where these nutrients originate to ensure you're getting what you need.

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Eat Two Servings of Fish Each Week

Salmon Salad
Makes 4
Prep 20 m
Chill 60 m

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Know the Difference Between Omega-3s


There are three main dietary omega-3 fatty acids, and they aren't all created equal. Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), occurs in plant foods like soybeans, canola oil, and pumpkin seeds. The second and third types, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), found mostly in seafood, are most closely associated with boosting heart health. Since your body has to first convert ALA into EPA and DHA for it to be effective, and only a small amount actually gets converted, it's important to get the bulk of your omega-3s from fish sources.

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Not a Fish Eater?


If you don't love fish, add daily servings of foods like ground flaxseeds, walnuts, and leafy greens into your diet. At your next physical, talk to your doctor about taking a fish oil supplement.

Originally published in the April 1, 2011, issue of Family Circle magazine.

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