The objective of the present work was to characterize the n-3 fatty acid composition of eighteen species of Mexican marine fishes and to evaluate their potential as functional food. Total lipids and fatty acid (FA) compositions were obtained of the edible portion of the fish, by solvent extraction and gas chromatography. Fifty percent of the studied species proceeded of the Mexican Pacific and the remainder from the Gulf of Mexico. The total lipid content varied from 0.76 to 7.13 g/100g. Averages of 58.51, 58.74 and 132.85 mg/100g of flesh were obtained for saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated FA, respectively. In all the samples the n-3 fatty acids identified in order of abundance were (mg/100g), C22:6n-3 (DHA) (85.02), C20:5 n-3 (EPA)(16.22), C18:3 n-3 (ALA)(1.95) and the C20:3 n-3 was found only in four species (range from 0.08 to 12.99 mg/100g). Twenty-seven percent of the fishes exhibited low (4 to 40), 66% intermediate (70 to 170) and 7% high values (200 to 300 mg/100g) of n-3 FA. The latter species were identified as picuda (Sphyraena agentea) and sargo (Lagodon rhomboides). Since international standards recommend a daily regular consumption form 200 to 650 mg of EPA + DHA/day as beneficial for good health, it is therefore suggested as functional food.