The Brain-Boosting Power of Omega-3s
Omega-3 fatty acids are one type of healthy fat known for their positive impact on the brain and heart. Omega-3s, which are a type of polyunsaturated fat, have many roles in the body, including promoting healthy brain cells, reducing inflammation, and lowering risk of heart disease. One specific type of omega-3, called DHA, is particularly important for brain health, as long-term intake of adequate DHA has been linked to improved memory and learning ability.
Let’s be honest: most of us could benefit from extra brain power, especially during the workday. What we eat can make or break how our bodies and minds feel as we go through our daily routines. Fortunately, a balanced diet focused on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein, and healthy fats can help us to function at our best, keeping us productive and happy.
DHA can be found in oily fish like wild salmon, albacore tuna and sardines, fish oil supplements, and algae like seaweed. Other types of omega-3s can be found in flax seed, walnuts, and chia seeds. With all of these sources to choose from, omega-3s can truly be incorporated into your meals at any time of the day.
Whether you prefer breakfast, lunch, or dinner, here are ways that you can make foods containing omega-3s a part of your regular routine.
- Add chia seeds or ground flaxseed to your oatmeal, cereal, or yogurt.
- Make a flavorful chia pudding.
- Top your whole grain toast with omega-3 fortified peanut butter or eggs.
- Sprinkle walnuts or hemp seeds on your salad.
- Use salmon or tuna as the protein in your lunch bowl.
- Snack on steamed or dry roasted edamame between meals.
- Serve herring, trout, or tempeh as your protein of choice at dinner.
- Use flaxseed or walnut oil to make a homemade dressing for your side salad.
- Crust your chicken breast or tofu in crushed walnuts.