Can you get all of the essential Omega-3 fatty acids on a plant-based diet? Omega-3s are important for your physical and mental health, and there are three types that our bodies need – ALA, EPA and DHA. According to the National Institutes of Health, adult males require 1.6 g of ALA each day, and females require 1.1g each day.
According to Dr. Mills and Dr. Radak, our bodies can convert alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) from plant sources into EPA and DHA, though how well your body converts them varies from person to person. You can also obtain a good dose of EPA and DHA directly from algae oil and seaweed products. The reason why fish are high in omega-3s is that they consume microalgae and seaweed.
Plant sources of ALA include walnuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, Brussels sprouts, avocado oil, tofu, and kidney beans. Many plant-based beverages are also fortified with omega-3s, so be sure to check the label.