Why do we need Omega-3 fatty acids?
Fat in our diet are of two kinds, one which provides only calories hence is basically fuel while another kind of fat are the Essential fatty acids, or EFAs. These are required for running biological processes for good health. We need to intake these essential fatty acids via food as our body cannot synthesize them.
People consume enough of the essential fatty acids known as omega-6s found in refined cooking oils like canola and sunflower oils. However an average person suffers from omega-3 deficiency due to lack of omega-3 fatty acids containing foods in his or her diet. The ideal ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3 fatty acids in foods should be about 1:1 to 2:1. Various health benefits of these essential omega-3 fatty acids range from improving heart health, reducing cholesterol and triglycerides to prevention of various kinds of cancers and for overall mental and behavioral health. Animal based sources for omega-3 fats are Fish and Krill oil while plant based sources are Walnuts, Soy based foods, Flax seeds, Pumpkin seeds and Chia seeds. Try to regularly include some of these sources in your diet to avail the benefits of these essential fatty acids!