What Are the Best Fish to Eat for Omega-3 Fatty Acids?

Filed Under: General Health
Last Reviewed 02/06/2014

What Are the Best Fish to Eat for Omega-3 Fatty Acids?

Which types of fish are best to increase your omega-3 fatty acids?


There's a big difference in the omega-3 content of different varieties of fish. Fish caught in the wild, as opposed to those that are farmed, seem to have higher levels of the fatty acid.

Here's a list of three fish groups, with their percentages of omega-3 oil content.

  • Group I: mackerel (1.8%), lake trout (1.6%), herring (1.5%), sardines (1.4%), albacore tuna (1.3%), salmon (1.1%)
  • Group II: halibut (0.6%), river trout (0.5%), catfish (0.4%)
  • Group III: cod (0.3%), snapper (0.2%), tuna packed in water (0.2%)

A four-ounce serving of fish from Group 1 two or three times a week will supply a beneficial dose of omega-3 fatty acids. It will take two or three 8-12 ounce servings a week of those in the second group. And the omega-3 levels of those that fall into the third group are almost too small to count.

Fortunately, some of the most beneficial fish are also the least expensive, i.e., mackerel and sardines. This is obviously because their high oil content gives them a more "fishy" taste, which a lot of people don't like.

I also recommend taking two or three tablespoons of freshly ground flaxseed each day to complement your fish intake.

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