Best Sources of DHA Omega-3 Fatty Acids During Pregnancy

Numerous health benefits are achieved from polyunsaturated fats like the omega-3 fatty acids during pregnancy. Alpha-linolenic acid is a kind of omega-3 fat found in foods originated from plants. This type of fat cannot be manufactured by the human body. When you consume plant foods, the alpha-linolenic acid gets converted to eicosapentaenoic (EPA) and docosahexaenoic (DHA) acids. You can find docosahexaenoic acids in seafoods and thus doctors recommend these foods during pregnancy.

The omega-3 fatty acids are gaining popularity and awareness in all age groups and especially during this delicate phase of womanhood. Cardiovascular diseases can be avoided during pregnancy by including omega-3 fatty acids in your daily diet.

The brain, eyes and the central nervous system are highly supported by the DHA, which is essentially important during pregnancy and for the betterment of the fetus. The best sources of DHA omega-3 fatty acids are as follows:

best sources of DHA omega-3 fatty acids during pregnancy

Flaxseed Oil

Cold pressed flaxseed oil preferably 116519mg per cup of 218g or 7483mg per tablespoon of 14g is the accurate proportion recommended. Canola oil (1279mg) and soybean oil (950mg) are the other types of vegetable oil that function as good sources of omega-3 fatty acids.

Fish Oil Preferably Salmon Fish

Omega-3 fatty acid is also obtained in correct proportion from fish oils. The measurement is per tablespoon of 14g with 5186 mg of fish oil. Although salmon is the best variety, you have the option of Menhaden, sardines, cod liver oil and Herring as other good sources of omega-3 fatty acid.

Chia Seeds

Per ounce of 28g measuring 4992 mg of chia seeds also delivers as the best source of omega-3 fatty acids.

Walnuts and Walnut Oil

Another source of omega-3 rich food is walnuts and walnut oil. Walnut oil consists of per tablespoon 1456mg omega-3. Apart from walnuts, Macadamia nuts, Hickory nuts, pine nuts, pecans, butternuts and pistachios are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids.

Smoked and Canned Fish

Smoked salmon, salted mackerel, canned anchovy, canned salmon and canned sardines act as rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Per ounce of 28g measuring 806mg is the required proportion.

Fish Roe

Fish roe provides 1088mg of omega-3s per tablespoon of 16g or per ounce of 28g provides 1905mg of omega-3 fatty acids.

Roasted Soybeans

Per ounce of 28g provides 474mg of omega-3 fatty acid. Additional soy foods that are rich in omega-3 are dried frozen tofu, raw firm tofu and fuyu.


Seafood like oysters, squid, mussels and clams are a good source of omega-3s. In a medium oyster of 25g you can obtain at least 396mg of omega-3 fatty acid.


Spinach is a green leafy vegetable which when cooked or boiled provides high omega-3 fatty acids. Per cup of 190g contain 704mg of omega-3 fatty acids. You can either include spinach in salads or cook it like the rest of the vegetables. Other vegetables like cauliflower, Brussels sprout, kale, broccoli and winter squash are the additional sources of omega-3 fatty acids.

Oily Fish

Fishes are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids especially the oily fishes like mackerel, American shad, wild salmon, farmed salmon, tuna, swordfish and trout. These provide about 2371mg for per 3oz of 85g.

During pregnancy, the fetus utilizes omega-3s for the development of the nervous system. It is also helpful after childbirth as it produces breast milk. Addition of DHA to the diet of a pregnant woman provides a good effect on visual and cognitive development of the infant.


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