Monday, December 7, 2009

Vegetarian Sources of Omega-3?

How can vegans and vegetarians get enough omega-3s?

It's difficult for vegans (vegetarians who eat no foods derived from animals, including eggs and milk) to get adequate omega-3 fatty acids from their diets, since the two essential omega-3 fatty acids, EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) are most available in fish oil. Vegetarian sources of omega-3s provide only ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), a precursor form that the body cannot convert efficiently to the DHA and EPA it needs. Other essential nutrients in short supply in a vegan or vegetarian diet are vitamin B12 and zinc. Eliminating meat from your diet also means that you're lacking the food source of the most readily absorbed heme iron (vegans and vegetarians need twice the intake of iron as non-vegetarians). Read more...

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