Which Fish Have the Best Source of Omega 3?
For years we have known about the health benefits of the Omega 3 fatty acids and we have been told that fish are the best natural source. While this is true, many people simply don’t like fish. There are other foods which are also high in the omega 3s, but alas, some of those foods are too expensive for our tastes on a regular basis. The alternative for those who don’t like fish would be omega 3 supplements which can be derived from fish or vegetable sources, but at least they won’t break the bank. In either case, if you love fish, here are some of examples of fish that are known to be the best source of the omega 3 fatty acids.
Three Groups by Percentage
When talking about the kinds of fish high in omega 3, there are actually three groups which are usually discussed. The first being those fish known to be extremely high in omega 3 fatty acids, those that have moderate levels and those with a small amount, but enough to help you get adequate intake if you eat them regularly enough. Again, since fish can be rather costly, many people prefer a daily supplement. Even so, here are those three groups of fish which are known to be the best sources of the omega 3s.
Group I – Fish High in Omega 3
So, you have probably had salmon stuffed down your throat as the highest source of the omega 3s. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case at all! Did you know that there are at least 5 other kinds of fish that are even higher in the omegas? Here are the ‘high level’ omega 3 fish in order of percentages:
- Mackerel – Contains 1.8% omega 3
- Lake trout – Contains 1.6% omega 3
- Herring – Contains 1.5% omega 3
- Sardines – Contains 1.4% omega 3
- Albacore tuna – contains 1.3% omega 3
- Salmon – Contains 1.1% omega 3
As you can see, each of those fish contain at least 1% omega 3 which makes them the highest sources in fish which are commonly eaten, with mackerel earning the number one rank.
Group II – Fish Moderately High in Omega 3
The next group with moderate amounts of omega 3 only lists three different kinds of fish. Those fish are:
- Halibut – Contains 0.6% omega 3
- River trout – Contains 0.5% omega 3
- Catfish – Contains 0.4% omega 3
You could roughly estimate this second group as having about 0.5% omega 3, and even though they are healthy sources, they are not as high in this amazingly healthy nutrient.
Group III – Fish Low in Omega 3
This group only contains 3 examples of fish which are, unfortunately, low on the omega 3 spectrum. Even so, they do contain enough to have earned them a place on the omega 3 lifeline. These fish are:
- Cod – Contains 0.3% omega 3
- Snapper – Contains 0.2% omega 3
- Tuna – Contains 0.2% omega 3 (note: this is canned tuna packed in water)
So, as you can see, the type of fish you eat may or may not have the required levels of omega 3 to provide the healthy benefits you are looking for.
Key Takeaway – If you aren’t a fish lover, omega 3 supplements are readily available, just remember to check the supplier before buying a supplement that has little or no healthy value.