Friday, April 9, 2010

Are You Taking Your Omega-3's?

We all have heard that omega-3 fatty acids are good, right? We know that the average American diet is extremely deficient in omega-3's and therefore, we should be taking our supplements! We know that, as CrossFitters, it helps to decrease our muscle soreness, increase our recovery, and decreases inflammation throughout our bodies! And it does SO much more! It's involved in fighting chronic diseases, heart heath, blood pressure regularity, brain function, and the list goes on! The benefits come from consistently taking the appropriate dosage!

So how much should you be taking? The rule of thumb is to work up to:
1/2 gram EPA/DHA omega-3's for every 10 pounds body weight.

So for example, a person weighing 160 lbs:
160/10=16 x .5 grams = 8 grams or 8000 mg. per day.

If you're taking Nordic Naturals Omega-3 supplements, that's 29 capsules per day. I know that sounds like a lot, and it is. Work yourself up to that amount gradually... Start with 3 capsule 3x per day?! Incorporate food sources that are rich in omega-3's as well! Also, take your supplements with a meal or snack rich in protein and fat.

What to look for when shopping for fish oil supplements?
Make sure they're Omega-3 DHA & EPA .
Look for fish oils that are "purified" & "pharmaceutical grade".
I have been very happy with Nordic Naturals, Carlsons, and Coscto's brand!
My personal favorite of late is the Carlsons liquid. It has more DHA/EPA per tsp. so I don't have to take so many capsules per day. When calculating how much you need, be sure to look at the EPA/DHA total per capsule or tsp.

1. Flaxseeds
2. Walnuts
3. Salmon, wild caught (chinook)
4. Sardines
5. Halibut
6. Shrimp
7. Snapper
8. Scallops
9. Cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage...yes!
10. Spices, like: mustard seed & oregano!

So, enjoy your Omega-3's and stay healthy! :-)
Hope some of this information helped clear any 'fish oil' confusion!


Stephanie in Utah said...

Hi Kelly,

My doc recommended I take an omega 3,but I have tons of food allergies. A common ingredient in most of the omega's is soy. Even if I wasn't allergic, its brutal stuff. (Flax can raise estrogen levels too!). I did hours of research and found quite a few allergen free brands. Here they are: (Starting with the very best..)

Hope those help!

Anonymous said...

Your post suggests that walnuts are not high in omega-6. Unfortunately that's not correct:

28g / 100g omega-6
5.5g / 100g omega-3

They're still not a bad choice (due to the omega-3s present), but they are very high in omega-6 too.

Kelly Greco said...

Thank you Stephanie for the allergen free information! Very helpful! And, thank you anonymous for pointing out that walnut are still very high in omega 6 fatty acids. Because most of us on the Paleo diet, consume a fair amount of nuts, walnuts are still a better choice due to the amount of omega 3 present. Macadamia nuts also have a fair amount of omega 3's (as far as nuts go)... but yes a lot of omega 6 too.
Thanks for your comments! :-)

Unknown said...

Try the Robb Wolf Fish Oil Calculator via the WHOLE9 Blog.

Kelly Greco said...

VERY cool, Chuck! Thanks!!!

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