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What foods are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
One way to offset the gaseous side effects of a dramatic increase in dietary fiber is by eating a Peruvian whole-grain seed called chia, the same grain used to make Chia Pets -- although you obviously shouldn't eat a Chia Pet.

Chia is as chock-full of fiber as other whole grains, but it packs in even more vitamins. A cupcake made with chia has more magnesium than about ten heads of broccoli, and it's got as much calcium in it as a couple cups of milk, It adds one other thing, too, by the way. It's very rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

Omega-3 fatty acids are another way to stay young that has gotten plenty of media attention. If you're relying on flaxseed for your omega-3s, you most likely need to roast or grind the seeds to release the oils. If you just eat them, you'd need to really chew them with your teeth, which is difficult. Other good sources include walnuts and hemp seeds.

One of the most widely reported sources of omega-3s is salmon. Recently, many concerns have been raised about eating salmon -- whether the fish is wild or farm-raised, worries about global sustainability, over-fishing, and rising mercury levels. The best way to get around these issues, is to get to the source and eat what the salmon eat: spirolina algae, which has valuable DHA omega-3s. We can avoid the issues of sustainability because we can get a ton of it. You can grow algae pretty easily, and it's a much more efficient way of getting it.

A crucial part of any well-rounded diet includes one or two tablespoons of olive oil a day in foods like salad dressing.

One thing to keep in mind about olive oil is that you should not fry foods in it. "If you take a healthy fat and you fry it -- if it reaches its smoking point -- then you actually are oxidizing it, when you oxidize it, you actually damage the fats, so you lose a lot of the benefit."

Rather than putting the oil in a pan and heating it, a better method is to put the food in the oil first and then add it to a heated pan. That's a wonderful way of reducing the amount of oxidation that occurs.

This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.