A short-chain fatty acid of the omega-3 family, α-linolenic acid (ALA) is not synthezised by the body. Considered as essential, ALA must therefore be provided in sufficient quantities through the diet. It is mainly found in vegetable oils, such as rapeseed oil, linseed oil or walnut oil.
α-Linolenic acid is also the precursor of other omega-3s such as EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). The latter allow the formation of anti-inflammatory molecules, such as type 3 prostaglandins (PGE3).