Omega 3 fatty acids are one of the most talked about nutrients these days, and the vegan lifestyle is one of the most opted. Now vegans and omega 3 are not at all a pleasant combination because the most popular sources of omega 3 fatty acids are fish and seafood. However, irrespective of one’s lifestyle the body needs certain nutrients and that cannot be overlooked.
It’s funny to hear a vegan order for food, especially a pizza, because these folks never forget to make it a point that their food must be free from animal meats and other food products derived from animals, and that too with alternatives and confirmation of those ingredients.
That’s probably the reason that the vegan food market is rapidly growing with alternative nutrition and as a result vegans now have calcium sources such as vegan cheese, soy sausages and soy milk. However, calcium was easy but with omega 3 it gets tougher. That’s because there is one thing that even the fast growing food market cannot make and that’s soy fish. Even if they did, the nutrients would still be missing because plant sources contain only ALA.
Omega 3 fatty acids are a group of three polysaturated fatty acids namely ALA, EPA and DHA. While ALA comes from plant sources, EPA and DHA come from fish. Though it is said that the body can partly convert ALA to EPA and DHA, it is recommended that one speaks to one’s doctor before completely depending on ALA sources that are listed below.
Top Ten Omega 3 Fatty Acids’ Sources For Vegans:
Dried Chia seeds
An ounce of dried chia seeds that can easily be slipped into jams, pizzas or even puddings contains a whopping 4915 mg of Omega 3 fatty acids and is rich in other nutrients too. Some of the other nutrients found in this ounce of dried chia seeds include around 4.4 grams protein, which is around 9 percent of the daily requirement and 0.6 mg manganese which is around 30 percent of the daily requirement.
Flax seeds are one of the most common seeds consumed by health enthusiasts. These seeds are equally treasured by weight loss enthusiasts despite the fact that every tablespoon of ground flax seeds contain around forty two percent fat. Two tablespoons of ground flax seeds weighing 14 grams contains around 6 grams of fat and out of that about 3194 mg of that is Omega 3 fatty acids, which is the good fat and around 828 mg is omega 6 fatty acids which is again considered good for health.
Mustard oil is one of the age old oils used in Indian cuisine. This oil is being recently discovered by the American chefs who are falling in love with this oil’s pungent taste. Mustard oil has many health benefits and omega fats are one of them. Two big spoonfuls of this oil weighing around 28 ml contains 1652 mg of omega 3 and 4293 mg of omega 6. That gives a clear reason apart from taste for the American chefs to include mustard oil even in the Italian paninis.
These nuts look so similar to walnuts that these are also called white walnuts. After all these belong to the same genus as walnuts, which is the Juglans genus. These are not easy to find in a store but if one does find these then an ounce gives as much as 2441 mg of omega 3 fatty acids. This ounce of butternuts also includes around 9443 mg of omega 6 fatty acids and 1.8 mg manganese which is quite high and is nearly 92 percent of the daily requirement of manganese. The reason these nuts are not easily available is because this tree is said to get diseased quite easily and so it’s not grown on a commercial scale quite often.
Black Dried Walnuts
Butternuts are not easy to get, but a member of that same genus, which is the Juglans genus is quite easily available. Walnuts are one of the most commonly used nuts and are also highly nutritious. An ounce of black dried walnuts contain around 562 mg of omega 3 fatty acids and 9260 mg of omega 6 fatty acids. These nuts are more than a source of omega 3 for vegans because it’s also rich in Magnesium, Manganese and Protein.
Wheat Germ Oil
Wheat germ oil combined with olive oil makes a flavourful and healthy dressing on salads. The reason to use wheat germ oil for vegans is its high content of omega 3 fatty acids. A big spoonful of wheat germ oil weighing about 14 ml contains around 932 mg omega 3 fatty acids and 7396 mg of omega 6 fatty acids. That spoonful of wheat germ oil also contains 20.2 mg vitamin E and that’s nearly 101 percent of the daily requirement.
Just like flax seed, its oil is also quite rich in omega 3 and omega 6 fats. However, treating flax seed oil as cooking oil could be a mistake because heat greatly messes up the omega 3 composition in this oil. The best way is to consume flax seed oil is to drink a tablespoon of this oil directly. Though its taste isn’t great, a tablespoon of flax seed oil measuring 14 ml contains around 7196 mg omega 3 fatty acids and 1715 mg omega 6 fatty acids.
Spearmint in the dried form is a good source of omega 3 fatty acids that vegans can count on. An ounce of dried spearmint contains 782 mg of omega 3 fatty acids and 125 mg omega 6 fatty acids. An ounce of dried spearmint also gives around 417 mg of calcium, 24.5 mg of iron and 2962 IU of vitamin A. Spearmint has several health benefits and can be used in salads, juices or even to make tea.
This vegetable is an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids and a hundred grams of sautéed green bell peppers contain 770 mg of omega 3 fatty acids, 5130 mg omega 6 fats and are also rich in vitamin C and vitamin K. With a very small variation, a hundred grams of sautéed red bell peppers contain 775 mg of omega 3 fatty acids, 4944 mg omega 6 fatty acids and is rich in vitamin A and vitamin K.
Yellow Mustard Seeds
Yellow mustard seeds are one of the commonly used ingredients in the American and European cuisine and vegans can count on it for a good supply of omega 3. Every ounce of these seeds contain around 751 mg of omega 3 fatty acids, 725 mg of omega 6 fatty acids and is also rich in other nutrients.