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How to Get Omega 3 On A Vegan Diet | Dr Michael Greger of Nutritionfacts.org

October 10, 2019


You say you’re vegan, right? Mm hmm…okay…yeah…well… Omega-3’s and stuff so…you should really get on some fish oil supplements. For your Omega-3’s No I don’t need to do your blood work, just take’em. Hi it’s Emily from Bite Size Vegan and welcome
to another vegan nugget. Today is the second installation of my interview with the nutrition
powerhouse and the mastermind of nutritionfacts.org…Dr. Michael Greger This series is about addressing the nutrients
of greatest concern for those switching to a vegan diet. Last session we took on the
monolith of protein and found out that it’s… …really not an issue. And today we’re moving
on to another common concern. Omega 3 fatty acids. Let’s hear what Dr. Greger has to
say and then I’ll share with you my own personal omega panel blood results, fish and
supplement free. So, another concern that people have
going vegan, and…they usually get this concern because…well, we’re talking about Omega-3
fatty acids. People think, okay when they hear Omega fatty acids, they think fish supplements
and fish oil and those kind of things. So, there’s always this concern, where am I
going to get my Omega-3’s? So, would you mind telling us a little bit about Omega-3
sources on a plant based diet? Sure, so Omega-3 fats are essential
fats, I mean we have to them into our diet as opposed to other fats that our bodies can
make on their own. And essential fats, these essential fats are found in…concentrated
in…flax seeds, and walnuts, and chia seeds, and hemp seeds, and get some in dark green
leafy vegetables. These are the short chain Omega-3 fatty acids called Alpha-Linolenic
acid and our bodies can actually elongate these short chain Omega-3’s into the long
chain called the Marine Omega-3’s; DHA and EPA. And so…these long chain Omega-3’s
aren’t found naturally, in kind of a terrestrial plant based diets but actually are made by
little algae out in the ocean. And so, that’s where the fish get it from, the fish don’t
make it either. The fish get it from the algae. And so, if we wanted to get a long chain source
of Omega-3’s DHA…EPA directly in our diet, we’d cut out the middle fish and take algae
based supplements, so then you get the Omega-3’s without the industrial pollutants that have
so contaminated the aquatic food chain, even distilled fish oil capsules. But this would
be predominantly for brain health, not heart health as…disappointedly the fish oil supplements
and these long chain Omega-3’s have not…reduced risk for cardiovascular disease as well as….advice
to increase your meals of fatty fish…does not seem to be as cardioprotective or cardioprotective
at all compared to early studies that point in that direction. But for brain health, you
know, when people call us a ‘fathead’’ and maybe kind of true, but a third of our
brain by weight…is DHA, this long chain Omega-3, and so the question is, yes we can
make it…but can we make enough for optimal health? That’s still a question that’s
up in the air. Maybe not enough for two brains, so women before conception may want to…get
a direct source of DHA in their diet which will be from algae based, um…regardless
of what they think about animals, algae based is the only way you’re gonna get a contaminant
free source of long chained Omega-3’s. So, start taking a DHA supplement and particularly
as we get older, it might be a good idea to get a long chain of Omega-3 like DHA in our
diet..so, I recommend 250 mg of algae based DHA everyday. But if you do…actually measure
these long chain Omega-3 levels in the general US population, vegans have the same level
that omnivores, and the rest of the population does. But that’s because no one really eats
fish here in the US. And then for optimal levels we probably need to do better, so the
only contaminant free source are the algae based sources. With Omega-3’s, I think sometimes
people get a little confused with the, is it the quantity of Omega-3 vs. Omega-6 or
is it the ratio that’s the most important? So, well, you need to get enough
but the ratio matters in that conversion process if you’re getting a direct source of, DHA
for example, then you don’t really have to worry about your ratio. But the ratio does
affect, because they compete with each other…for the same enzymes that elongate these Omega-3
fatty, these fatty acids. So, if you have a lot of Omega-6 in your system then the little
Omega-3 you got in flax seeds or walnuts is kind of pushed to the back of the line, you make
more of long chain of Omega-6’s. And so, if you’re relying on strictly, on this terrestrial
plant based sources, then yeah, it’s a good idea to not consume Omega-6’s rich oils and junk
food. This is really where you get the major sources of Omega-6’s; cottonseed oil, corn
oil, sapphire oil, sunflower oil. You know, these aren’t healthy foods for anybody but
particularly in people that want to optimize that…elongation process, you want to stay
away from those foods. I hope you enjoyed hearing from Dr. Greger about Omega 3 Fatty acids. You certainly don’t have to eat fish to get your Omega
3s. As Dr. Greger so aptly pointed out, the reason that animals products have the nutrients that we
desire is because those animals get them from eating plants. So cut out the middle animal, the
middle fish, and go to the source. Then you get all the pure nutrients without all the
extra crap like cholesterol that comes packaged in animal products. The omegas in fish come
from their consumption of algae, so why not start there? Otherwise it’s like saying,
“Hey I really like your hair color” and then scalping you so I can wear your hair
rather than asking you what kind of dye you use. You’re welcome for that visual. So, in an older video of mine with some…awesome
editing, I went trough the results of my own Omega profile. This was when I’ve been eating
raw vegan for about 8 months with lot’s of greens and no omega supplement. You can find
out my results in this video and I show you the day’s nutritional breakdown as well- but suffice
to say, my doctor told me that he’d never had anyone’s numbers come back so good and to
be sure to stay on my Omega supplement, because he assumed I was on one. But this is a daily thing for me. Just here you can see my omega 3 intake for
yesterday. I’ve had a lot of inquires about the software that I used on that in some of my other videos. And it’s a free service called Cron-O-Meter. If you want to see how you measure up or whether you need to grab an algae supplement or just pack in some greens. Check out ‘Cronometer.com/#’ to track your nutrition. It’s totally free and pretty
freakin’ awesome- so awesome that they’re sponsoring this video to help get this vital
information out to you. Be sure to click the link in the description below to make your profile
so they know that Bite Size vegan sent you. I don’t get any money when you click on it,
but it does let’s Cronometer know that good things come to those who support my nuggets. My videos.
That’s what they’re called. Nuggets Nevermind If you enjoyed this look into the non-fishiness
of Omega 3s give the video a big thumbs up and share it around to spread the nutritional
truth. If you’re new here, be sure to hit that big red subscribe button down there for more
awesome vegan content every Monday, Wednesday, and most Fridays, and to not miss out on the
rest of the videos with Dr. Greger. If you want to help keep Bite Size Vegan educating,
check out either of the support links in the video description below and for perks and
rewards for your support, just click on the Nugget Army icon there or the link down below
for more info about joining up. And hey, check out some of the related videos while you’re
here. And all the links here and to anything I’ve mentioned will be in the video description below.
For those of you who are on your phone or your tablet. Now go live vegan, cut out the middle fish,
and I’ll see you soon. You know, Vegan and Omega-3’s with the vegan. I don’t know if you’re in the screen, you might be in the screen. Subtitles by the Amara.org community

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