7 Top Fish for Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Your Health

Salmon is high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for your brain and nervous system function properly. They're also good for your heart because they decrease the risk of arrhythmias, lower triglyceride levels and blood pressure, and they help keep plaque from clogging your arteries.

The American Heart Association recommends eating two servings of fish every week. Fish are some of the richest sources of two forms of omega-3 fatty acids called docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). DHA and EPA just happen to be the types of omega-3 fatty acids your body needs.

The form made by plants, called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is a little different from EPA and DHA. Although your body converts ALA to DHA or EPA as needed, fish are probably still the best source of omega-3s.

But not all fish are created equal and some have more omega-3s than others. The following eight fish are all rich in omega-3 fatty acids (and delicious).


Herring is high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Herring is often pickled and served as an appetizer before meals, but these small fish can be also cooked on the grill, oven or stovetop. Herring is also a great source of protein, calcium, magnesium, potassium, niacin, vitamin B-12 and selenium. 

Nutrition Information for Herring


Salmon is high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Salmon steaks and fillets can be baked, grilled, sauteed, or poached. Or you can keep a can of salmon on hand to make salmon salads or sandwiches. Salmon is also high in protein, magnesium, potassium, niacin, vitamin B-12, and vitamin A.

Nutrition Information for Salmon


Mackerel is high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Mackerel is often smoked or canned, but fresh mackerel fillets can also be grilled or baked. Besides the omega-3 fatty acids, mackerel is high in vitamin B-12, niacin, selenium, magnesium, iron and potassium, plus a fair amount of protein.

Nutrition Information for Mackerel


Sardines are high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Sardines are small oily fish that you'll typically find in cans. They're often served with crackers as an appetizer. Fresh sardines may be available and can be grilled, baked or smoked. Sardines are also high in vitamin D, niacin and calcium.

Nutrition Information for Sardines


Anchovies are high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Anchovies are often found on pizza or Caesar salads, and you'll find them in cans when you go grocery shopping. Fresh anchovies can be grilled or used in recipes that call for sardines. Anchovies are also high in protein, calcium, potassium, selenium, vitamin B-12 and niacin.

Nutrition Information for Anchovies


Halibut is high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Halibut is a good fish for people who don't like the strong flavor of most oily ocean fish because it's a mild white fish that's still high in omega-3 fatty acids. Halibut is also an excellent source of protein, potassium, and niacin.

Nutrition Information for Halibut

Rainbow Trout

Rainbow Trout is high in omega-3 fatty acid.
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Rainbow trout is another mild white fish, so it's good for people who don't like salmon or tuna. Besides being high in omega-3 fatty acids, rainbow trout is also a good source of protein, calcium, magnesium, and niacin. 

Nutrition Information for Rainbow Trout


Tuna is high in omega-3 fatty acid.

Tuna is typically served as fillets or steaks, and it can be grilled, baked, or broiled. You'll also find canned tuna in your local grocery store. Tuna is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, magnesium potassium, vitamin B-12 and niacin.

Nutrition Information for Tuna


American Heart Association. "Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acids." 

United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service, National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference Release 28. 

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