We caught up with leading Harley Street registered Nutritionist Rhiannon Lambert to find out the importance of Omega 3’s and why your body needs them.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids have been high on the agenda recently, but, why do we need them? As we enter the winter months we need them more than ever, to help support our bodies mental and physical health.
What excatly are Omega 3’s?
Omega-3 Fatty Acids first and foremost are polyunsaturated fats but they are also essential fats, which means the body cannot synthesis or make them from scratch, and therefore we need to source them from the diet. There are no current formal recommendations for Omega-3’s per day.
Omega-3 are essential for the heart and the brain; as they have been proven to reduce blood pressure, especially in pregnant women and children.
Why does our body need them?
Firstly, they are essential so it’s up to us to source them from our diet. Consuming enough Omega-3’s can lead to great health benefits. Omega-3 have been known for their association with bones and joints. Research shows that Omega-3 may help reduce the risk of osteoporosis, by increasing the amount of calcium in bones which improves bone strength .
Studies have also shown consistency in the evidence between omega-3 and a reduction in inflammation . Additionally, Omega-3 have been linked to improved sleep; length and quality. This link is great for both adults and children, as getting enough sleep is vital for optimal health . Lastly, Omega-3 are essential for the heart  and the brain , as they have been proven to reduce blood pressure, especially in pregnant women and children . The brain and heart are two vital organs and muscles in your body that you need to keep healthy, so this is a key benefit to remember.
How to get a top up in Winter?
With all these great health benefits, you’d think we were consuming plenty, but actually we consume more omega-6 fats due to our western diets of vegetable oils, meat and processed foods. It is important to consume more omega-3 and the easiest way to do it, is through dietary sources.
Getting enough Omega-3’s in your diet has been linked to improved sleep; both length and quality…
Where to get them from?
When people think about Omega-3 they immediately think to fish, and while yes, oily fish are one of the top sources, for people that aren’t keen there are still options out there.
• Oily Fish; Salmon, mackerel, sardines. – Don’t let the high calorie count throw you, aim for 2 portions/week as they are the top source of Omega-3.
• Chia seeds – Sprinkle them on a salad or make into a chia-seed pudding.
• Walnuts – Great mid-morning snack, and high in antioxidants and B-vitamins.
• Dark leafy greens; spinach, kale. Make them the new lettuce in your salad, or add your morning smoothie/juice.
Now that you know what the sources of Omega-3 are, start adding them into your diet, and you will feel the benefits. But if you still struggle to get that dose of Omega-3, you can also get a top up from an omega-3 fish oil supplement that are high in Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA). Just be sure to pick a good brand that is high in purity and low in environmental contaminants.
 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/ pubmed/9932142
You can find out more about Rhiannon Lambert at: www.rhitrition.com
Rhiannon’s new book is out December 28th on Amazon. An expert’s guide to re-nourishing your mind and body through eating well by London’s leading Harley Street Nutritionist.