Healthy Omega 3 Fats
Have you ever heard a health guru say, “Fat is bad! Avoid it!” If so, you’ve been misinformed, like millions of other Americans. What these health gurus fail to understand is that EVERY single cell in your body is made up of fat and NEEDS to be to function (otherwise you would die). Eating fat is good, healthy, and natural – the problem has become that too many people are eating far too much of the unhealthy fats – trans fats and processed fats.
There are two major kinds of essential fatty acids (EFA’s) or essential fats – Omega-3 fats and Omega-6 fats. Researchers have found that the ideal ratio of Omega-3 to Omega-6 fat is 1:1 for optimal health. Recent tests of mother’s milk in America have found ratios as out of balance as 1:45! This means that the mother was eating 45 times more Omega-6 fats than Omega-3 fats.
This is a huge problem because we’re designed to have a balance between these two fats. Omega-3 fats are anti-inflammatory fats. They help lower inflammation, protecting your body from damage.
Omega-6 fats are pro-inflammatory fats – they promote inflammation.
When you eat too many Omega-6 fats and not enough Omega-3 fats, your body must utilize Omega-6 fats in places where it would rather use Omega-3s. Your body becomes “compromised” – missing these vital building blocks. Furthermore, inflammation grows out of control and can lead to diseases like diabetes, auto-immune disorders like Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Crohn’s Disease and many more. Every chronic disease we know of from cancer to heart disease to stroke are all contributed to by inflammation.
Thus, in reducing your risk of chronic diseases and early death, it’s imperative that you try to balance your intake of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats as much as possible. For 99% of Americans, this means eating more Omega-3 fats.
Omega-3 fats are damaged and destroyed by high heat. This means that if you cook your food, most of the Omega-3 fats in it will be damaged and your body won’t be able to utilize them.
There are numerous ways to eat more Omega-3 fats. Here are some of the best foods that contain Omega-3 fats:
Flax seeds are a fantastic source of Omega-3s. Furthermore, they contain lignins which are very powerful insoluble fibers that promote digestive health and reduce risk of prostate cancer. You can grind up flax seeds and put them into oatmeal, smoothies, cereals, breads and other dishes. Whenever possible, do not cook or high heat the flax seeds as that will damage the fragile Omega-3 fats.
Chia Seeds have been used for thousands of years since the Mayans and Aztecs used them. These civilizations used these power-packed seeds to sustain their fiercest warriors in battle and revered the seeds, valuing them even more than gold! Chia seeds are definitely worth their weight in gold when it comes to protecting your health and providing you with healthy omega-3 fats.
Hemp seeds are another power-packed seed that contain high levels of Omega-3s. In addition, the protein in hemp seeds is complete and very powerful and there are numerous other antioxidants and nutrients in the seeds. Hemp has gotten a bad “wrap” for some time now because it is in the same family as cannabis (marijuana) but they are not at all the same plant. Hemp is a fantastic plant for industry (it can be made into paper, clothing, and numerous industrial supplies) and hemp seeds are an incredibly valuable and healthy food.
Wild Salmon (NOT farm raised, not “Atlantic Salmon”)
Wild salmon contains high levels of Omega-3 fats. Just make SURE it’s wild – any farm-raised salmon or salmon labeled as “Atlantic Salmon” will NOT have any meaningful level of Omega-3 fats because they feed farm-raised salmon corn instead of a natural diet. This creates unhealthy fish – and if you eat them, it makes you unhealthy.
Walnuts are delicious and a great source of Omega-3 fats. Just remember to do them raw as much as possible or else you’ll lose most of the Omega-3 fats to oxidation.
Some algaes have very high levels of Omega-3 fats and are the BEST source of Omega-3 fats in most cases. In fact, the only reason salmon or any other seafood has Omega-3 fats is because they get them from the algae that produce them! Then the fats cycle up the food chain as larger and larger fish eat them. But the best way to get your Omega-3 fats is straight from the source – in the plant kingdom, whether algae, flax, chia, hemp, walnut or other plants.
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