by Marilyn

Marilyn's question:

Please print every food that contains omega 3's for those of us that are intolerant/allergic to fish and flaxseed. I am certain I do not get enought omega 3's.

Suzy's answer:

Hi, Marilyn,

Thanks for bringing this important topic to our attention.

There has been a lot of interest in the importance of the essential fatty acids, Omega-3 and Omega-6. These are essential fats that you need to keep your heart healthy as well as for the formation of cell membranes—particularly in the brain. Most health experts agree that while getting enough Omega-6, we are deficient in Omega-3 fats.

In your case, since you can't rely on fish or flax seed to get your Omega 3’s, you will need to rely on other foods in your diet to provide these essential fats.

Here is a list of Omega 3 foods other than fish and flax seed that will help you:

Walnuts, chia seed and cloves are very good sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Other good sources of these Omega 3’s include soybeans, tofu, miso, green leafy vegetables, such as kale, collard greens, turnip greens and spinach, Brussels sprouts, raspberries, strawberries and winter squash.

A note about Chia seed

Chia seed is an excellent plant source of Omega-3 fatty acids. Adding chia to your diet is easy and in addition to the Omega-3 fats, provide Omega-6 fats, protein, fiber, calcium, phosphorus, manganese and zinc, and anti-oxidants. You can buy chia seed online or at your health food store. It is also starting to show up in the healthy section of grocery stores.

New kind of eggs

Some egg companies are producing "Omega-3" eggs by feeding their hens a diet high in Omega-3 fatty acids. Including these eggs in your diet can help add to your overall intake of Omega-3's, but, by themselves, are not sufficiently high in Omega-3 to be the only source of these important fatty acids in a your diet.

How much do you need?

There is no established RDA for Omega-3's, but it has been suggested that 4-5 grams should be adequate for the average diet. This amount will easily be supplied by 2 oz. of walnuts or a combination of the foods listed above in smaller amounts.

Vegetarian sources okay

You may have heard that you need to get your Omega-3's from animal sources, but vegetarians or those who can't tolerate seafood, can get their essential Omega-3 fats from walnuts, flax seed, chia seed and green leafies. These foods are sources of linolenic acid and not DHA another important Omega-3 fat. Since linolenic acid is the essential fatty acid, as long as you are getting enough of this one, your body can produce the other Omega-3 fats that it needs.

If you are still concerned, there is an algae that can provide a vegetarian source of DHA, a non-essential fatty acid, and this is available in supplement form.

I hope this helps, and thanks for continuing to visit our healthy eating site.

Eat and be healthy with our warmest regards,


Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Ask Suzy.

Bright Hope Kids

Bright Hope International brings hope to those living on less than $1 a day.

Click on this link to help feed the hungry children of the world.

Every little bit you can give will help these kids toward a healthy future. Thank you in advance for you kindness and generosity.

Sign up to receive emails of my blog

Healthy Eating Blog

�ª Grab this Headline Animator

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Most Recent Articles

  1. Vegetarian Protein

    Oct 27, 16 09:25 AM

    A list of vegetarian protein sources to help those who are pursuing a vegetarian diet or who wish to include some meatless meals in their diet.

    Read More

  2. Nutrition Facts to help you plan your healthy eating lifestyle.

    Oct 26, 16 09:47 AM

    A quick list of Nutrition Facts to help you reach your goal of eating healthy.

    Read More

  3. Healthy Menu Plan

    Oct 25, 16 09:16 AM

    Healthy Menu plan provides examples of healthy meals, including breakfast, lunch, supper and snacks, along with information about serving sizes for all food groups.

    Read More

Have a question about eating healthy?

Get answers to your healthy eating questions.