In the past few years, we’ve seen lots of studies citing inflammation as the culprit in disease formation. By lowering inflammation within the body, you can help reduce your risk for a variety of conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and even Alzheimer’s. And I’m sure you’ve heard by now that omega-3s are effective antioxidants that do just that. The highest levels of omega-3s in food are found in fatty fish such as mackerel, Atlantic or sockeye salmon, lake trout, herring, sardines and canned light tuna. But, you’ve also likely heard about the mercury and other toxins that can often be found in the fish we eat. Confusing, huh?
According to the American Heart Association, which recommends eating two servings of fish a week, toxins are highest in older, larger, predatory fish and marine mammals such as shark and swordfish. Wondering which fish are best? The Monterey Bay Aquarium recently teamed with experts from the Harvard School of Public Health and the Environmental Defense Fund to identify the types of seafood that are lowest in toxins and also environmentally friendly. Together they created the “Super Green List” to help consumers shop smarter. To see the list and learn which seafood items have the maximum health benefits and are most sustainable, visit http://montereybayaquarium.org/supergreen.
If you're a vegetarian, you can find some omega-3s in flaxseed oil and walnuts. Your body converts the type of omega-3 found in these foods to the more beneficial type found in fish oil (but not at the same level).