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Omega-3: ​5 Reasons Why Women Need It
Omega-3 is a type of fatty acid that is essential for women’s health. Ms Joey Ho, Dietitian from the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH), shares its benefits. 

What is Omega-3?
Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are essential to human health for certain vital functions and benefits. Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is essential for the eye, nerve and membrane development. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are important for the production of prostaglandins, a hormone-like substance, that usually help to regulate blood pressure, inflammation, neurological functions, hormones production etc. in human body.

"The human body itself cannot produce these essential fats such as ALA, EPA and DHA, hence will need to obtain these nutrients from diet. ALA it is typically found in plant-based oils (e.g. flaxseed, canola, soybean oils), nuts and flaxseeds. DHA and EPA are the long-chain fatty acids that can be synthesized from ALA in human body, however the conversion is slow and limited. Therefore, it is recommended to source EPA and DHA from seafood, mainly oily fish (e.g. salmon, tuna etc.) and shellfish (e.g. crab, oysters)," says Ms Joey Ho, Dietitian from the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics at KK Women’s & Children’s Hospital (KKH), a member of the SingHealth group.

"For vegetarians and those who do not like to eat seafoods, they can obtain such valuable fatty acids from nuts and seeds, soy products and green leafy vegetables. Besides dietary options, omega-3 supplements can be easily found on the market with different concentrations of EPA and DHA," she adds.

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