Adding Omega-3 to your diet


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — What you eat every day is important when it comes to your physical health. And dietitians say it’s essential to make sure you consume the right nutrients.

Deb Wallenberg says she’s been taking a multi-vitamin daily since she was little.

“I don’t know that I get all the vitamins I need from the foods I eat so I figure that helps,” Wallenberg said.

Registered dietitian Tiffany Krogstad says one nutrient in particular everyone should be consuming is Omega-3 fatty acids.

“There are many health benefits. It ranges from like anxiety and depression, to helping prevent heart disease, to certain types of cancers like colon and prostate and breast cancer,” Krogstad said.

She says there are three components to Omega-3, ALA, EPA and DHA.

“ALA actually has to be consumed through foods or through our diet, our body cannot make it. DHA and EPA can be made actually from ALA, but only very small amounts,” Krogstad said.

Because our body can’t produce enough Omega-3 on it’s own, experts say getting it through our diet is crucial. The National Institutes of Health suggests adults get between 1.1 to 1.6 grams, depending on their health.

There are various foods containing Omega-3s and an easy way to add some to your diet is with a handful of nuts.

Specifically walnuts– which rank high on the list of foods containing Omega-3, alongside seafood, chia seeds and flax seed oil. In addition to her multi-vitamin, Wallenberg says she consumes some Omega-3s through her diet.

“I eat a lot of nuts, sometimes tuna, not a lot of other fish really, unless I can get some fresh walleye,” Wallenberg said.

And getting them from your diet is best, although Krogstad says taking a supplement is an alternative when necessary.

“If you’re unable to obtain Omega-3 from your diet because of certain likes or you have allergies or whatnot, but is recommended that you speak with your health care provider before starting any type of supplement,” Krogstad said.

Krogstad says dermatitis, or a skin rash can be a signal of an Omega-3 deficiency.

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