Wednesday, October 30, 2013

So Much to Love About Omega-3s

Omega-3s seem to be the talk of the “healthy fat” town these days. And there’s no denying how much we love them.  Here’s why:

There are many benefits of consuming omega-3 fatty acids – they help to lower blood pressure, reduce the level of triglycerides in blood, have an anti-inflammatory affect in the body, and also help to prevent chronic diseases.

Omega-3s are what are referred to as essential fatty acids, meaning our body cannot make them, and so we must consume them through food.  There are two main categories of omega-3 fatty acids.  EPA and DHA omega-3s come from fish sources and ALA omega-3s come from plants. 

EPA and DHA, the omega–3 essential fatty acids in fish oil, have been shown to also have mood-boosting qualities, including:

ü  Prevention and treatment for clinical depression – up to 50% reduction
ü  Supporting memory and learning ability
ü  Reducing anger and irritability
ü  Increasing focus and attention
ü  May help slow the progression of age-related memory loss
ü  Protecting nerve and brain cells from oxidative stress and damage

Why? One reason…the brain is nearly 60% fat, and DHA makes up 20% of the total fatty acids in the part of the brain responsible for memory and attention. 

To get the optimal mood-boosting potential, stick with fish-based sources of omega-3s (DHA and EPA). Here are our general recommendations below:

ü  Aim for at least 2 (3 ounce) servings of coldwater fish per week

ü  If choosing a supplement, choose one with at least 1000 mg combined of DHA + EPA per day, for support and maintenance. ***We love this video by registered dietitian, Jennifer Neily to help you understand how to best choose a fish oil supplement.

We also encourage you to enjoy plant-based sources of omega-3s (ALA) such as walnuts, olive oil, flax seeds, and chia seeds on a regular basis to reap the other wonderful benefits associated with omega-3s.

Since we’re such fans of getting our omega-3s, we absolutely love Barleans Omega Swirl in Lemon. We add it to our smoothies, stir it into yogurt, and recommend it to our friends, family, and clients for its great taste and nutrition.

A couple weeks ago at FNCE, I ran into the wonderful Nutrition Babes who shared this delicious recipe featuring another fun Barleans’ product – Barleans’ Greens Chocolate Silk. We put it to the taste and love it! Hope you do, too!

Photo by our wonderful contributing blogger, Jaime


½ cup low fat cottage cheese
6 oz milk or milk alternative (i.e. almond, soy, rice)
1 scoop Barlean’s Greens Chocolate Silk
1 large handful of darky leafy green, such as kale, Swiss chard, or spinach mix
4 ice cubes

Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix well until smooth.

Sweet Twist:
Add fresh raspberries for an added touch of sweetness. 

Enjoy, preferably with those you love.

No comments:

Post a Comment