Claire Corlett

Fish Food, Fish Tanks, and More
Should We Take EPA and DHA Omega-3 For Our Heart?

Should We Take EPA and DHA Omega-3 For Our Heart?


according to two perhaps the most credible nutrition authorities the world health organization of the European Food Safety Authority we should get at least a half a percent of our cows from the essential short chain omega-3 ala which is easy just like a tablespoon a day of chia seeds or ground flaxseed and you’re all set our body can then take the short chain ala from our diet and elongate it into the long-chain omega-3s EPA & DHA but the question is long Binh can our bodies make enough for optimal health well how would you determine that don’t take fiber for example convincing body of literature showed an increased heart disease risk when diets were low in fiber so the Institute of Medicine came up with a recommendation for about 30 grams a day which is an intake observed to protect against coronary heart disease and reduced constipation thus just as cardiovascular disease was used to help establish an adequate intake for dietary fiber it was used as a way to develop a recommendation for EPA and DHA so with reviews published as late as 2009 suggesting fish oil capsules may help with heart disease nutrition authorities recommended an additional 250 milligrams a day of preformed epa and DHA since evidently we were not making enough on our own if taking more helped so in addition to the one or two grams of ala 250 milligrams of preformed DHA epa which can be gotten from fish or algae fish is a toughy because on one hand fish has the preformed DHA and EPA but on the other hand our oceans have become so polluted that fish may contain various pollutants including dioxins PCBs pesticides like DDT flame-retardant chemicals and heavy metals including mercury lead and cadmium that can negatively affect human health this was an editorial comment on a recent study on women they found that dietary exposure to PCBs was associated with increased risk of stroke and almost three times higher risk of hemorrhagic stroke unless you live next to a toxic waste dump the main source of exposure to PCBs is fish consumption of which perhaps salmon it’s the worst though PCBs can also be found in lesser quantities in other meat sources as well this may explain my studies in the US have shown that just a single serving of fish a week may significantly increase one’s risk of diabetes emphasizing that even levels of these pollutants once considered safe may completely counteract the potential benefits of the omega-3s and other nutrients present in fish leading to the type of metabolic disturbances that often precede type 2 diabetes now one could get there too much in 50 50 milligrams a day from algae oil rather than a fish oil which is free from toxic contaminants because it never comes in contact with anything from the ocean then one could get the best of both worlds right the beneficial nutrients without the harmful contaminants but recently it was demonstrated that these long-chain omega-3s don’t seem to help with preventing or treating heart disease after all and since that’s the main reason we thought people should get that extra 250 milligrams of preformed epa and DHA why do I still recommend following the guidelines because the recommendations were not just based on heart health but brain health as well to be continued you

88 comments on “Should We Take EPA and DHA Omega-3 For Our Heart?

  1. Assuming that the next video is going to tell that we should get DHA for it's protective effects on the brain: what does damage the brain in the first place, isn't it a SAD diet to begin with ? Does somebody eating "WFPB" have the same risk and need for extra DHA ? I mean, if DHA had protective effects on the respiratory system for smokers, would we recommend taking DHA for smokers and non smokers, instead of recommending smokers to… stop smoking ???

  2. What do you recommend for omega 6 if we are supposed to have a 1:1 ratio though which I think you have touched on in the past? Cheers Dr Greger as always

  3. I'm very happy to see this video, Dr Greger. It has been at tad frustrating not understanding for sure why anyone should take DHA (or EPA). I eagerly await the follow up to this video.

  4. I eat a ton of chia, flax, and hemp seeds. Should I consider getting algae oil as well? Not sure how well my body converts ALA.

  5. Thank you for clearly addressing the video's main question and then giving us additional information. Looking forward to the next video!

  6. The amount of ALA (omega3) converted to EPA and DHA is all relative to the amount of omega6 consumed….the more omega6 the less conversion takes place (omega3 and 6 compete with each for digestion). Also saturated fat further inhibits the conversion process

  7. this just doesnt make any sense, why would we need to supplement fats in our diet? no other species on the planet has to, why would we need to do that?

  8. Does we make enough EPA and DHA giving the ALA intake is adequte/enough ?
    Yes/No/Maybe…
    We can check vegans that eat falxseeds for omega 3… Why this isn't done one YEEEETTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT ?

  9. I think I mistakenly encouraged my dad to buy the Horizon milk that says on it, "Omega-3" for brain health. That's all he buys when buying milk now. In fact, he had all but quit drinking milk until information from my brothers and me together got him back to drinking it, but only the one with the O-3 in it. (My brothers, as well as one alternative doctor, said he needed more brain protein, and I looked at the milk carton one day in the store while helping my parents shop). Now, I need to try to fix that. If I lived next to them, I'd prepare your daily dozen, which they do about half those on their own. But, alas, I live too far away and one brother that lives next door doesn't get the alternative health conviction.

  10. I don't know why, but I knew this video was really about how bad fish is. I guess I've watched enough of these vegan videos now…

  11. Random question, but what can I eat to help with fatigue? I'm a vegan and eat around 2000 calories a day. I exercise regulary as well, but stilll find myself tired throughout the day :/

  12. Thank you for all your work Dr. Greger, but we need more videos like this on obtaining hard to find nutrients on a vegan diet! Vit K, Zinc, Iron, EPA and DHA etc.

  13. we can easily get the recommended omega3 from flax seed, walnuts, and greens. fish is totally unnecessary. don't worry about conversion to EPA and DHA. we have evolved long enough to have that figured out, just stick to your physiological diet and avoid excess omega6 in most industrially produced vegetable oils today which artificially jack up your need for omega3s

  14. I am allergic to algae, makes me super nauseated, I take cod liver oil and then afterward eat my shredded red cabbage which is full of sulforaphane and fiber
    to clean out any toxins.

  15. With my vegan diet and using flaxseed meal for EFA, I typically get about 2.3 grams of Omega 3 (142% of needed) and about 6.4 grams of omega 6 (46% of needed) according to the online Chronometer. So I find veganism awesome 🙂

  16. I eat at least two tablespoons of ground flaxseeds a day. Plus, I don't eat refined oils like soy and olive oil. Not sure if I'm getting enough omega-3 but I'm pretty sure I'm almost there.

  17. Good Dr. My question is not should we be taking EPA/DHA for prolonged heat health, but should we taking DHA for long term Neurological/Brain Health instead? Thank you!

  18. Or simply buy and consume pomegranate frequently and this will help with a good heart function like opening your arteries to allow more blood through, in people with bleeding gums this fruit will help also to prevent that condition (providing you brush daily, don’t smoke , don’t use drugs, and prevent drinking heavily).

  19. Whooops I should stop buying the cheap fishoils from the US and start saving up for the ones from norway instead. Damn should have listened to the saleswoman last time

  20. Watched this whilst eating Date balls with ground flax seeds, chia seeds, almond extract and cacao. I've read ALA conversation is helped by vitamins B3, B6, C, and the minerals zinc and magnesium. Chia seeds and dates contain B6 and Vitamin C, Cacao contains B3, magnesium and zinc. Also for every 100 grams there's about 35 grams of fibre. Win? They taste like chocolate flavored marzipan.

  21. Great information, but it's presented way too fast. I had to pause, go back, read and hit play multiple times to get through this video. The spoken words and text don't match up and it's impossible to focus on both at the same time.

    I know you're excited about all the evidence, Dr. Greger! I'm a big fan of Nutrition Facts. I've learned so much from your work and eat a lot healthier food because of this.

    So could you slow down please? : )

  22. I don't eat much fish but I do have a daily fish oil capsule. They're screened and filtered of all the harmful chemicals. I also put ground flax seeds in my cereal/oatmeal.

  23. I have an bad gene of people in my family with oscoses where their bones break really easy and I'm vegan and my mom was talking about how am I going to be able to live without omega 3 and cnow I'm here

  24. EPA+DHA supplements are very expensive though, costing over $30 per 90 pills when flaxseed oil supplements cost $8 for the same amount. Even multivitamins cost around $10. What's the alternative?

  25. I'm confused. I've seen your older videos recommending only flax. Are you now saying we should have algae pills for our brain health?

  26. Hey Dr. Greger. I was wondering if you could shed some light on this article from dr mercola. Love your book. Thanks!

    You would want to choose an animal-based variety – most of the health benefits linked to omega-3 fats are linked to the animal-based EPA and DHA, not the plant-based ALA.

    Furthermore, ALA is converted into EPA and DHA in your body at a very low ratio. What this means is that even if you consume large amounts of ALA, your body can only convert a relatively small amount into EPA and DHA, and only when there are sufficient enzymes.

    Remember, though, that plant-based omega-3 fats are NOT inherently harmful or should be avoided. Ideally, what you want to do is include an animal-based form in your diet. For instance, you can combine flax and hemp in your diet with animal-based omega-3s."

  27. I suggest farmed mussels or oysters, they can only survive in the most pristine waters and have loads more nutrients without the toxicity/detriment to oceans that fishing causes. Also high in B12, iron and selenium among many others including omega-3s.

  28. OK now I'm really confused. Does a high omega 6/3 ratio still increase the risk of a heart attack?.. By the way, thank you for all the info here and on your website!

  29. I heard Hemp seeds are even better they contain chemicals that allow much better
    conversion of EPA/DHA along with GLA which is not found in flax or chia
    or other superseeds.

  30. efter att ha tittat igenom en väldigt massa av dom här klippen. slutsats måste ändå bli att det börjar lukta kvacksalveri.

  31. I had a Triglyceride Level over 800 my doctor had me to go a lipidologist, and she put me on massive does of fish oil. (She said fish oil did not help with general heart health, but in massive doses it could lower Triglycerides. It helped a little. I was using an aweful lot of fish oil. Then I went on a whole plant food diet and eat the daily dozen pretty much every day (with some fasting regime). I stopped all fish oil. My last doctor appointment: My triglycerides were 63. So Fishoil helped a little, but diet helped a lot.

  32. If you buy omega 3 containing capsules (fish oils) that are Molecularly Distilled, it is tested to be free of potentially harmful levels of contaminants (i.e. mercury, heavy metals, PCB's, dioxins, and other contaminants).

  33. Can anyone tell me for someone who hates smoothies how do I get flax seeds into my diet. Dried them with cereal and it sucks. Maybe oatmeal or bread?

  34. Interesting. No mention of wild salmon and sardines which are extremely low in heavy metals and other toxic waste. At least mercury. They just don't accumulate it and if they do, it's very minimal where our body can easily handle and neutralize that particular amount.

  35. He we go again with that dreaded word 'may' may do you, may screw you, may work, may won't kill you, may let you live longer. The favorite CYA word of scientists.

  36. Macadamian nuts and walnuts also would be a good option for vegan but otherwise just eat mackerel or herring if you can't afford wild caught salmon..

  37. consuming algae? Doesn't that have that share the same risks for heavy metal contamination as fish? especially since certain algae's are marketed as a 'dietary supplement', there is literally no industry regulation. stick to whole foods that are easily available (yes even fish or omega 3 eggs)

  38. Dr Greger, there IS way more to taking EPA/DHA from algae than heart disease prevention. I have suffered from dry eyes for YEARS, only to see it get worse and worse over time. No matter what over-the-counter drop or other things or tacticsI tried, it only got worse. Then I discovered a possible connection between dry eye syndrome and deficiency in omega-3 and/or EPA/DHA. I started taking algal DHA/EPA supplement and I noticed significant difference before even making my way through the first bottle. I continue to take it and now I can actually make my way through a major department store without looking like I'm crying my eyes out. In fact, I'm not bothered by my eyes at all. So…we need EPA/DHA for a lot more then heart disease prevention. thank you for your work…it is truly appreciated!

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