Omega-3 fatty acids are considered an essential nutrient (1).Unlike fish or eggs, vegan omega-3 sources offer different phytonutrients that can benefit your body. In fact, vegan omega-3 sources are exceptionally good at fighting inflammation because of their added antioxidants and vitamins.
What happens if you don’t have enough omega-3 fatty acids in your diet? Symptoms you can expect include fatigue, mood swings, depression, poor circulation, and memory problems (2). Clinical research has demonstrated the importance of omega-3 fatty acids not only in how well our bodies function, but how well they prevent health problems.
Omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation and improve cognitive function. In infants and children, omega-3 fatty acids promote healthy growth and development and help prevent nerve disorders and vision problems (3).
Plus, these essential fatty acids help lower your risk for heart disease, certain cancers, arthritis, and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
How Much Omega-3 Your Body Needs?
Since the body cannot create its own supply of this essential nutrient, it helps to know, which omega-3 foods you should be eating.
Healthy adults should aim for between 250-2000mg of omega-3 daily, per their doctor’s recommendations (4).
Most people turn to fish: salmon, tuna, sardines, and mackerel are all wonderful sources of omega-3s. However, there are a number of plant sources that can meet your needs as well – here’s a list of vegan omega-3 sources you’ll definitely want to try: