Good-for-you fat? Yes! Unsaturated fats aren’t the diet “bad guys” but are important for your health. Today we’re looking at Omega 3s. This type of fat reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke. It also helps reduce symptoms of hypertension, depression, attention deficit disorder, joint pain, and other rheumatoid problems, as well as some skin problems. New research shows that omega 3s also boost the immune system and protect from Alzheimer’s disease.
Omega 3s have another important function. We talked about the importance of Omega 6s yesterday. Too much Omega 6, though, can cause problems with platelet clumping. Omega 3s in the right balance fix that problem so you get only the positive results from Omega 6.
The trouble is that most Americans get way too many of Omega 6 and 9 and far too few Omega 3s to balance them out. The right ratio, experts say, is 4 parts Omega 3 to 1 part Omega 6. We typically get 1 part Omega 3 to 20 parts Omega 6.
So we need to change that balance! You can do that by eating foods rich in Omega 3. Salmon, tuna and mackerel are the best sources. If you aren’t a fish fan, you can also balance your supply with flaxseed. And, of course, you can take supplements, but make sure you are getting them from a reputable company. Too much in a dose can be dangerous, so you want to be sure your supplements are standardized. That means that every pill has exactly the amount of Omega 3 that the bottle claims.
Some fats are good, some are bad — and some are downright ugly. We will look at the Dracula of fats tomorrow.
Eating to live and living for Christ,
Susan Jordan Brown