Monday, May 16, 2011
Heath Tip - Omega 3 benefits
Why do we need Omega 3? How do you derive Omega 3 in vegetarian and non-veg diets?
Omega 3 is an EFA (essential fatty acid). Studies suggest Omega 3 enriches our diet is a remedy for constipation, functional disorders of the colon - resulting from the misuse of laxatives and irritable colon, helps stabilize blood glucose levels, promotes bone health, fight tumor formation, enhances cardiovascular health, lowers blood pressure, cuts the risk of cancer and even helps memory loss.
For vegetarians - Omega 3 is obtained from pumpkin seeds, walnuts & flax seeds also known as linseed( In India, it is commonly known as 'alsi'), When ground flaxseeds taste similar to pine nuts except that its sticky/gooyi on the gums/teeth if eaten directly with water.
Usage - To avoid this, use Flaxseed in morning cereal or my favorite dessert after lunch is a bowl of fresh yogurt, add 2 tsps flaxseed powder with one tsp of cane sugar or jaggary. (For diabetics just flaxseed in yogurt with stevia powder if you wish)
Flax oil is fine if it is good quality and in small amounts. 1/2 tsp of oil per day is all you need. Pour oil over salads, pastas, pizza, tastes delicious.
Storage - Flaxseeds can be ground in small quantities and stored in a air tight glass bottle in refrigerator. If it is flax oil, once opened it goes back in the refrigerator as it goes rancid.
Other snacks high in Omega 3 - You can snack on pumpkin seeds or walnuts on a daily basis.
For non vegetarians- Egg yolks from pastured hens, liver and oily fish & cod liver oil capsules
Caution - High doses of flax seeds can have an adverse effect on the hormonal balance of the body. If you are taking coconut oil and other saturated fats, your body actually needs very little omega-3 because saturated fats ensure that the omega-3s are used very effectively and conserved in the tissues. So you do not need to be adding extra omega-3s to your diet, otherwise it could be harmful and dangerous to overdose on omega-3.
As for omega-6-they are in all foods.
In response to the questions asked since comments is not uploading
1. Can pumpkin seeds be dried,lightly fried and eaten then????
The best way to eat most nuts like pumpkin, sunflower, melon seeds is to soak them for a min of 12 -18 hrs, dehydrate them in a warm oven, then lightly roast them. In general, nuts contain levels of phytic acid equal to or higher than those of grains. Soaking eliminates some phytates.
High-phytate diets result in mineral deficiencies. In populations where cereal grains provide a major source of calories, rickets and osteoporosis are common
2. Does one have to differentiate between river fish and sea-fish????
Oil-rich fish such as salmon, trout, mackerel, herring and sardines, are an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential to our diet.