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This Common Deficiency Can Shorten Your Lifespan as Much as Smoking, New Study Finds


We know that getting enough omega-3 fatty acids in our diet is essential for regulating blood pressure and heart health. We’ve been told the importance of eating things like nuts and salmon for some time, but there is some startling new research on the subject: Suffering from an omega-3 deficiency can reduce our longevity by at least four years.

A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition examined how low omega-3 levels in blood negatively impacted the lifespan of participants in their mid-60s. Researchers found it to be an accurate predictor of a shorter life because it increased the risk of developing a serious health condition like heart disease.

They even compared omega-3 deficiency to another harmful habit. “Being a current smoker (at age 65) is predicted to subtract more than four years of life (compared with not smoking), a life-shortening equivalent to having a low versus a high omega-3 index,” the study’s authors wrote.

Understandably, they’re encouraging everyone to make sure we’re fueling our bodies with more of these fatty acids. The aim should be to get around 250 to 500 mg. of omega-3s each day. Luckily, all it takes are a few easy diet tweaks to make sure you’re getting what you need!

The National Institutes of Health recommends eating foods rich in omega-3, such as crunchy walnuts, salmon fillets, yogurt, and chia seeds. Whether you whip up berry parfait or some chia pudding for breakfast or serve white wine and herb grilled salmon for dinner, there are plenty of yummy ways to boost your longevity.

With a concentrated amount in each capsule, taking supplements is another quick and consistent way to get those omega-3s. Thankfully, you don’t have to go searching high and low to find them, simply check out our list of the best fish oil supplements. Just be sure to speak with your doctor before starting any new supplements to make sure it’s a good fit for your everyday routine.

Whatever way you go, supplying your body with omega-3s with food or supplements is a great way to lower your chances of developing major health troubles down the road!

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