Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Dietary Panacea?

Are you eating enough fish to reap the benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids? Studies have shown that the nutrient helps to reduce the risk of heart disease, fight depression, and keep one young.

Linda Beck writes all three articles above for The Globe and Mail, "There are no official recommendations regarding how much omega-3 fat one should consume each day, but most experts agree that a daily intake of 500 milligrams of DHA and EPA (combined) helps to reduce the risk of developing heart disease. If you eat six ounces of salmon each week, you’re getting 500 milligrams of omega-3 fats.

If you have been diagnosed with heart disease, the American Heart Association recommends you consume 1,000 milligrams of omega-3 fats a day. If you don’t like fish, fish-oil supplements are a good alternative. Fish-oil supplements are made from salmon, anchovies, sardines, herring and mackerel. If you opt for supplements, read labels before you buy. Fish-oil capsules vary in the amount of DHA and EPA they contain. Most capsules provide 300, 500 or 600 milligrams..."

I take a fish oil tablet daily with 900 milligrams of DHA and EPA. I also eat several cans of sardines a week and bake salmon several times a month. I don't have heart disease (fingers crossed) but the research suggests that for someone my age, who is soon to hit 60, it certainly can't hurt to focus on those fish oils.