Types of Omega-3s: Not All Fatty Acids are Created Equal
EPA and DHA Omega-3 fatty acids are commonly found in shellfish, salmon, and tuna. Vegetarian sources are found in some foods like flaxseed, soybean, and canola—but they’re only rich in ALA , which doesn’t have as many health benefits as EPA or DHA (the Omega with the most proof of benefits). Your body can only convert a very small percentage (about 5%) of ALA to DHA and EPA, which is why most vitamins tout fish oil as the ideal source of Omega-3’s. Not exactly veg-friendly, and—considering that many Omega-3 fish oil products can be rancid by the time of purchase—only slightly nauseating.
Save the Anchovies: Finding Vegan-Friendly DHA
Thing is, if you do a little digging, you’ll find that there actually is a vegan-friendly source of DHA out there. Like we mentioned earlier, DHA is found in fish. But fish get their DHA from eating phytoplankton, which get it from eating microalgae. That means the true source of DHA is the microalgae. By cutting out the middle man (middle fish?) and going straight to the source, we can get a vegan-friendly form of DHA, and save 750 anchovies and herrings per bottle of vitamins in the process.
Ritual’s Omega-3 DHA
At Ritual, using clean, vegan-friendly ingredients that actually work in your body is simply who we are. So when we found out that we could get you the Omega-3 DHA you need through vegan algal oil from fermented microalgae (a patented process that also leaves minimal environmental contamination, btw) from Algarithm in Canada, we of course went for it.
That's not all. In a clinical study conducted by Auburn University, Essential for Women was shown to increase omega-3 DHA levels by 41% over 12 weeks, compared to no change in a placebo group.*
So, to sum it up: Take your vitamins, get the Omega-3 DHA your body needs, and save the anchovies.