Limited

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Content of Fish and Seafood

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Content of Fish and Seafood | The Paleo Diet

In the past decade, perhaps the single most important dietary recommendation to improve our health and prevent chronic disease is to increase our dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids which are found primarily in fatty fish.  Thousands of scientific papers spanning a variety of diseases unequivocally demonstrate the health benefit of these fatty acids.  In randomized clinical trials that enrolled patients with pre-existing coronary heart disease, omega-3 fatty acid supplements significantly reduced cardiovascular events (deaths, non-fatal heart attacks, and non-fatal strokes).  Omega-3 fatty acids reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease through a number of mechanisms, including a reduction in heart beat irregularities called arrhythmias, a decrease in blood clots which in turn can decrease the risk for heart attack and stroke, decrease in blood triglycerides, slightly lower blood pressure, decrease rate of plaque formation in arteries, reduce overall inflammation which is now known to be an important factor causing atherosclerosis.

In addition to reducing the risk for heart disease, regular consumption of fish or supplemental omega-3 fatty acids may be helpful in preventing, treating, or improving a wide variety of diseases and disorders, including but not limited to virtually all inflammatory diseases (any disease ending with “itis”), rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disorders (Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis), periodontal disease (gingivitis), mental disorders (autism, depression, postpartum depression, bi-polar disorder, borderline personality disorder, impaired cognitive development in infants and children), acne, asthma, exercise induced asthma, many types of cancers, macular degeneration, pre-term birth, psoriasis, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, cancer cachexia, intermittent claudication, skin damage from sunlight, IgA nephropathy, lupus erythematosus, type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and migraine headaches.

The average U.S. diet is deficient in omega-3 fatty acids and amounts to a paltry 1.6 grams per day (of which 1.4 grams come from alpha linolenic acid [ALA] and only 0.1 to 0.2 grams come from EPA and DHA).  Most of the beneficial effects of omega-3 fatty acids are due to EPA and DHA.  Because the conversion of ALA to DHA and EPA in the liver is inefficient, very little ALA is converted to EPA and DHA.

Try to include at least 0.5-1.8 grams of EPA + DHA per day in your diet, either by eating fish or fish oil supplements.  If you have documented coronary heart disease, you should include at least 1.0 grams of EPA + DHA in your diet.  Patients with hypertriglyceridemia (elevated or high blood triglycerides) can lower their values by as much as 40 percent by taking 2-4 grams of EPA + DHA per day.  If you are taking more than 3 grams of EPA + DHA per day, consult with your physician because high intakes tend to prevent blood from clotting and may cause excessive nose bleeding.

Here is a link to a scientific paper by the American Heart Association on the subject:
http://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full/106/21/2747

Omega-3 fatty acids content in fish and seafood per 100-gram portion

ALA = alpha linolenic acid (18:3n3), EPA = eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n3), DHA = docosahexaenoic acid (22:6n3), Tr = Trace amount.

ALA (g) EPA (g) DHA (g) Total
Finfish
Anchovy, European 0.5 0.9 1.4
Bass, freshwater Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Bass, striped Tr 0.2 0.6 0.8
Bluefish 0.4 0.8 1.2
Burbot 0.1 0.1 0.2
Capelin 0.1 0.6 0.5 1.2
Carp 0.3 0.2 0.1 0.6
Catfish, brown bullhead 0.1 0.2 0.2 0.5
Catfish, channel Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Cisco 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.5
Cod, Atlantic Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Cod, Pacific Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Croaker, Atlantic Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Dogfish, spiny 0.1 0.7 1.2 2.0
Dolphinfish Tr Tr 0.1 0.1
Drum, black Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Drum, freshwater 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.6
Eel, European 0.7 0.1 0.1 0.9
Flounder, unspecified Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Flounder, yellowtail Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Grouper, jewfish Tr Tr 0.3 0.3
Grouper, red Tr 0.2 0.2
Haddock Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Hake, Atlantic Tr Tr Tr 0.0
Hake, Pacific Tr 0.2 0.2 0.4
Hake, red 0.1 0.1 0.2
Hake, silver 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.6
Hake, unspecified 0.1 0.4 0.5
Halibut, Greenland Tr 0.5 0.4 0.9
Halibut, Pacific 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.5
Herring, Atlantic 0.1 0.7 0.9 1.7
Herring, Pacific 0.1 1.0 0.7 1.8
Herring, round 0.1 0.4 0.8 1.3
Mackerel, Atlantic 0.1 0.9 1.6 2.6
Mackerel, chub 0.3 0.9 1.0 2.2
Mackerel, horse Tr 0.3 0.3 0.6
Mackerel, Japanese horse 0.1 0.5 1.3 1.9
Mackerel, king 1.0 1.2 2.2
Mullet, striped 0.1 0.3 0.2 0.6
Mullet, unspecified Tr 0.5 0.6 1.1
Ocean perch Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Perch, white 0.1 0.2 0.1 0.4
Perch, yellow Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Pike, northern Tr Tr 0.1 0.1
Pike, walleye Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Plaice, European Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Pollock 0.1 0.4 0.5
Pompano, Florida 0.2 0.4 0.6
Ratfish Tr Tr 0.1 0.1
Rockfish, brown Tr 0.3 0.4 0.7
Rockfish, canary Tr 0.2 0.3 0.5
Rockfish, unspecified Tr 0.2 0.3 0.5
Sablefish 0.1 0.7 0.7 1.5
Salmon, Atlantic 0.2 0.3 0.9 1.4
Salmon, Chinook 0.1 0.8 0.6 1.5
Salmon, chum 0.1 0.4 0.6 1.1
Salmon, coho 0.2 0.3 0.5 1.0
Salmon, pink Tr 0.4 0.6 1.0
Salmon, sockeye 0.1 0.5 0.7 1.3
Saury 0.1 0.5 0.8 1.4
Scad, Muroaji 0.1 0.5 1.5 2.1
Scad, other Tr Tr 0.0
Sea bass, Japanese Tr 0.1 0.3 0.4
Seatrout, sand Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Seatrout, spotted Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Shark, unspecified Tr 0.5 0.5
Sheepshead Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Smelt, pond 0.1 0.2 0.3
Smelt, rainbow 0.1 0.3 0.4 0.8
Smelt, sweet 0.3 0.2 0.1 0.6
Snapper, red Tr Tr 0.2 0.2
Sole, European Tr Tr 0.1 0.1
Sprat 0.5 0.8 1.3
Sturgeon, Atlantic Tr 1.0 0.5 1.5
Sturgeon, common 0.1 0.2 0.1 0.4
Sunfish, pumpkinseed Tr Tr 0.1 0.1
Swordfish 0.1 0.1 0.2
Trout, arctic char Tr 0.1 0.5 0.6
Trout, brook 0.2 0.2 0.2 0.6
Trout, lake 0.4 0.5 1.1 2.0
Trout, rainbow 0.1 0.1 0.4 0.6
Tuna, albacore 0.2 0.3 1.0 1.5
Tuna, bluefin 0.4 1.2 1.6
Tuna, skipjack 0.1 0.3 0.4
Tuna, unspecified 0.1 0.4 0.5
Whitefish, lake 0.2 0.3 1.0 1.5
Whiting, European Tr Tr 0.1 0.1
Wolffish, Atlantic Tr 0.3 0.3 0.6
Crustaceans
Crab, Alaska king Tr 0.2 0.1 0.3
Crab, blue T r 0.2 0.2 0.4
Crab, Dungeness 0.2 0.1 0.3
Crab, queen Tr 0.2 0.1 0.3
Crayfish, unspecified Tr 0.1 Tr 0.1
Lobster, European 0.1 0.1 0.2
Lobster, northern 0.1 0.1 0.2
Shrimp, Atlantic brown Tr 0.2 0.1 0.3
Shrimp, Atlantic white Tr 0.2 0.2 0.4
Shrimp, Japanese Tr 0.3 0.2 0.5
Shrimp, northern Tr 0.3 0.2 0.5
Shrimp, other Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Shrimp, unspecified Tr 0.2 0.1 0.3
Spiny lobster, Caribbean Tr 0.2 0.1 0.3
Spiny lobster, southern rock Tr 0.2 0.1 0.3
Mollusks
Abalone, New Zealand Tr Tr - 0.0
Abalone, South African Tr Tr Tr 0.0
Clam, hardshell Tr Tr Tr 0.0
Clam, hen Tr Tr 0.0
Clam, littleneck Tr Tr Tr 0.0
Clam, Japanese hardshell 0.1 0.1 0.2
Clam, softshell Tr 0.2 0.2 0.4
Clam, surf Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Conch, unspecified Tr 0.6 0.4 1.0
Cuttlefish, unspecified Tr Tr Tr 0.0
Mussel, blue Tr 0.2 0.3 0.5
Mussel, Mediterranean 0.1 0.1 0.2
Octopus, common 0.1 0.1 0.2
Oyster, eastern Tr 0.2 0.2 0.4
Oyster, European 0.1 0.3 0.2 0.6
Oyster, Pacific Tr 0.4 0.2 0.6
Periwinkle, common 0.2 0.5 Tr 0.7
Scallop, Atlantic deep sea Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Scallop, calico Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Scallop, unspecified Tr 0.1 0.1 0.2
Squid, Atlantic Tr 0.1 0.3 0.4
Squid, short-finned Tr 0.2 0.4 0.6
Squid, unspecified Tr 0.1 0.2 0.3
Fish Oils
Cod liver oil 0.7 9.0 9.5 19.2
Herring oil 0.6 7.1 4.3 12.0
Menhaden oil 1.1 12.7 7.9 21.7
MaxEPAT, concentrated 0 17.8 11.6 29.4
Salmon oil 1 8.8 11.1 20.9

Source: Exler J, Wehrauch JL. Provisional table on the content of omega-3 fatty acids and other fat components in selected foods. U.S.D.A., Human Nutrition Information Service, HNS/PT-103, 1988.

Join Now!
×

Comments are closed.