omega 3

Why Vegans Don’t Eat Fish

Many health-conscious omnivores are puzzled when it comes to rationalizing why they need to give up fish. Most health experts would agree that incorporating cold water fish into your diet is a healthy decision, and in many ways they aren’t wrong. So why give it up?

This article presents some reasons to ditch fish from environmental, ethical and health perspectives.


Is extinction a good enough reason?
Many species of fish have reduced 99% over the past 100 years due to the invention of ocean going engines. Modern boats allow humans to go further and deeper out to sea than ever before, leaving fish less places to hide from the net. Globalization helps us ignore this inconvenient fact since we are able to import fish from anywhere in the world, even when our own supply dwindles to an alarmingly low number.

Many fishing methods are also damaging to the earth’s marine life. For example, Dredging for scallops removes plant life from sea beds, disrupting the entire ecosystem. While fish farming increases the chance of disease spreading to wild fish and is often associated with chemicals and pesticides. Even green friendly buzz words like “line caught” are difficult to navigate. Similar to the word organic, the rules for “eco-friendly” labels on fish are subjective. 

It is no secret that our water is heavily polluted. Fish are not only contaminated from our pollution, but their numbers are dwindling from it. Oil spills, motor boats, toxic waste and an array of different hazards are making it harder for fish to survive.



Contrary to popular belief, fish experience pain.

Recent studies by Lynne Snedon, an aquatic animal behaviour expert, found “the presence of 58 pain receptors called nociceptors along the trout’s lips. She did so by testing the effects of bee venom and acetic acid injections into the mouth area. The affected fish exhibited “anomalous behavior,” such as rubbing their noses into gravel and shaking their bodies [source: Sneddon]. Since morphine appeared to ease the discomfort, Sneddon concluded that the trout’s reactions weren’t simply reflexive but genuine displays of pain response.

Pain is an essential survival skill. It tells us that fire is dangerous or that there is something wrong in our body. It makes sense that fish share this ability to feel pain. 
Humans feel a negative emotional response to pain. It is unclear if fish share an emotional reaction. However, it is documented that fish will remember unpleasant experiences. A fish will better avoid being caught in a net months after they were caught the first time.
If you are trying to prevent animal suffering, regardless of the degree of suffering, eating fish should be avoided.


Mercury accumulates in water ways and ends up in the fish we eat. This problem is only getting worse. It’s projected that by 2050 there will be a 50% increase of mercury in the Pacific Ocean. Experts are finding that ”Smaller traces of the toxic metal may be enough to cause restricted brain development or other health problems for humans who eat them.” This is especially dangerous to developing fetuses and small children. Some fish with the highest risk of ingested mercury include Tile fish, Swordfish, King Mackerel and Shark. 

Drawbacks of Farm-raised Fish: While sometimes considered better for the environment, farm-raised fish are more likely to have higher fat and calories with less protein. As mentioned before, they also tend to have higher levels of contaminants, chemicals, and disease than wild fish. 

Omega-3 argument 
Cold water fish are a major source of omega 3 fatty acids, and what pseudo health conscious person hasn’t heard of the benefits of omega 3’s? …even if they can’t remember what those benefits are.

Omega-3 Benefits

  • lower triglicerides (blood fat)
  • lower blood pressure
  • boost heart health
  • help with blood clots
  • assist in prenatal development
  • reduce inflammation (which helps other conditions such as arthritis)
  • benefits our overall mental health, especially depression.

Humans do not produce omega-3s naturally in our bodies. We have to get them from other food sources. The most popular way to take in omega-3s is from cold water fish because is is easy to find and people like the taste. Eating fish is an efficient way to get both APAs and DHAs, the 2 essential fatty acids that are in Omega-3s. Most plant sources are rich in APA but our bodies have to convert the APAs to DHAs on their own. This process is inefficient compared to simply eating a fish that has already processed it for you.

On the other hand, like humans, fish can not create their own DHA’s. Fish process DHA’s after eating marine plants. There are supplements and drink mixes that provide vegan DHA’s from algae and other marine plants as well as an array of nuts, oils, and veggies that are packed with Omega-3 APAs.

Plant sources of Omega-3s: algae/algae oil, flax seed, flax seed oil, cauliflower, sesame seeds/tahini (in hummus), walnut, olive oil, soy oil, canola oil, purslane, chia seeds, hemp seeds, brussel sprouts 

If You Still Want to Eat Fish At Least Remember…

The List of Fish to Avoid: Atlantic cod, Plaice, Tuna (excluding Skipjack), Tropical prawns (farmed and wild), Haddock (except line-caught Icelandic), European Hake, Atlantic Halibut, Monkfish, Atlantic salmon (wild and farmed), Marlin, Shark, Skate, Ray, Dogfish, Flounder, Grouper, Orange Roughy, Sole, Tilefish


Vegan Omega 3: Omega 6 Round Up

Flax & Chia Seed Crackers (GF) (one ounce flax seeds = 6388mg Omega 3 & 1655mg Omega 6; one ounce chia seeds = 4915mg Omega 3 & 1620mg Omega 6)

Vegan Banana Hemp Seed Sushi Slices (GF/raw) (one ounce hemp seeds = 1100mg Omega 3 & 2700mg Omega 6)

Banana Island Spirulina Shake (one tablespoon spirulina = 58mg Omega 3 & 88mg Omega 6)

Mung Bean Sprouts Sauteed with Spices (GF) (one cup cooked mung beans = 603mg Omega 3 & 43mg Omega 6)

Vegan Spinach Balls with Pesto Sauce (one cup cooked spinach = 352mg Omega 3)

Blueberry Vegan Cream Cheese (GF/raw) (one cup blueberries = 174mg Omega 3 & 259mg Omega 6)

Balsamic Roasted Winter Squash & Wild Rice Salad (one cup cooked winter squash = 338mg Omega 3 & 203mg Omega 6; one cup cooked wild rice = 156mg Omega 3 & 195mg Omega 6)

Kumquat Salsa (one kumquat = 9mg Omega 3 & 24mg Omega 6)

Mango Ginger Ice Cream (one mango: 77mg Omega 3 & 29mg Omega 6)

Cauliflower & Chickpea Curry (one cup cooked cauliflower: 208mg Omega 3 & 62g Omega 6)

Source of Omega 3 to Omega 6 mg

anonymous asked:

Fish is very good for the brain

Reading a good book is even better.
So are:
Flax Seeds
Chia Seeds
Hemp Seeds
Leafy Greens
Winter Squash

Omega-3s Fail to Keep Aging Brains Sharp

By Tia Ghose, Staff Writer   |   September 25, 2013 04:00pm ET

Omega-3 fatty acids may not help keep the aging brain sharp, at least in older women, new research suggests.

The study, published today (Sept. 25) in the journal Neurology, found that there were no differences in the cognitive skills of older women who had high blood levels of the fatty acids compared with those whose levels were lower.

"Our study of omega-3 blood levels and cognitive function did not find a protective association in older, postmenopausal women,” study co-author Eric Ammann, a doctoral researcher in epidemiology at the University of Iowa, wrote in an email to LiveScience.

Along with randomized trials also showing no effect, the findings suggest that omega-3s may not be the brain booster they were once thought to be, Ammann said.

Brain booster?

Early studies found that people who consumed more fish and nuts tended to have sharper minds and better memories than those who didn’t. And other studies found that omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation, which is a risk factor for heart disease.

But a recent randomized trial found that people taking omega-3 supplements did not have a lower risk for cognitive decline or improvements in memory.  [6 Foods That Are Good for Your Brain]

Ammann and his colleagues measured the blood levels of omega-3s in 2,157 women ages 65 and older. The women completed a series of cognitive tests over five years, aimed at measuring their working memory, verbal skills and spatial ability.

The team found no differences over the course of the study in thecognitive function or decline of older women with high versus low levels of the fatty acid. That suggests the omega-3s were not providing a brain boost for the women, the researchers said.

While past studies suggested that people who eat more omega-3 rich foods do tend to have better brain function, “this might not be cause-and-effect,” Ammann said.

"People who eat lots of fish or nuts, or who take omega-3 supplements, tend to be more affluent and health-conscious than those who don’t," he said. Women in the study with higher levels of blood omega-3s also tended to eat more fish.

"They are also less likely to smoke, more likely to exercise, and have a lower body mass index," all factors that are separately tied to better brain health and health overall, Ammann said.


anonymous asked:

Hey could you help me with something? I am more or less between being a vegetarian and a vegan, I don't touch meats, eggs or milk, really rarely cheese(I am relatively new to all of this, I've had this diet for only almost a year now)... but once a month I eat salmon sushi, I want to abandon salmon but I am weirdly worryed about my omega 3 and omega 6 intake... could you suggest me vegan recipes with a high intake of those?

I just posted this vegan omega 3 and omega 6 round up. I suggest checking out this article called 14 Best Vegan Sources of Omega 3 along with these entitled Fish, Omegas, and Cholesterol and No More Fish. The first one gives examples of vegan sources of omegas while the last two explain why obtaining omegas from fish is not only cruel but also the negatives involved in doing so. I personally take these flaxseed oil vitamins but I know that’s not an available option for everyone (note: if you choose to search for flaxseed oil vitamins or any other sort of gelcap vitamin make sure that they are specified vegan and do not contain gelatin). Top smoothies, milkshakes, ice creams and sorbets with flax seeds, chia seeds or hemp seeds. Cook with mustard oil instead of olive oil. Stuff winter squash with wild rice. Create seaweed and kale sushi. Make desserts out of blueberries. Snack on kumquats, mangoes and honeydew melons. Munch on cheesy cauliflower nuggets. There are so many ways to get more omegas in your diet. Have fun with it! Check out my vegan resource masterpost for advice and inspiration, amongst other things, on going vegan. I hope you can find some delicious ideas out of this!

For Acne-Free Skin: eating foods high in omega-3s is essential. Lack of omega-3s can make skin dry and prone to acne. By adding omega-3 foods it will help you transform dull and lifeless skin into a youthful glow. They also promote strong nails & hair.

PLANTBASED OMEGA-3 FOODS: Flaxseeds (pictured), walnuts, & chia seeds.