Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for your heart and brain. But lowering your intake of omega-6s — the polyunsaturated fats found in canola, soy, and safflower oils — is equally important. Although in the right amount omega-6s support skin health, keep cholesterol in check, and help blood clot, most Americans consume omega-6s and omega-3s in a ratio of about 20:1 (the ideal ratio is about 4:1). And because both fatty acids require the same enzymes to function properly, getting way more omega-6s starves omega-3s and promotes inflammation in the body, potentially contributing to heart disease, cancer, arthritis, and asthma. Take these three steps to achieve better balance.
- RAISE YOUR 3s
Eat oily fish twice a week. Or take 1,000 mg of a high-quality fish oil daily. TRY: Spectrum Fish Oil Softgels.
- LOWER YOUR 6s
Avoid vegetable-oil-laden processed foods.
- GET A GOOD RATIO
Work in naturally balanced foods, such as hempseeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds, and walnuts. And cook with a well-proportioned oil. TRY: Barlean's Total Omega oil.