Omega 3 Fatty Acid
Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine Focused on Energetics of Food Omega 3 Fatty Acid has many health benefits. Omega 3 fats, DHA and EPA are essential for healthy brain and nerve function.
Essential Fatty Acids Have Desirable Effects On Many Disorders
Contrary to popular myth, the body does need some of the right kind of fat.
The fatty acids that are necessary for health and that cannot be made by the body are called, essential fatty acids.
In cell membranes, omega 3 fats improves your cell's response to insulin, neurotransmitters and other messengers. When your cells are damaged, they help greatly in the repair process.
As a matter of fact, researchers believe omega 3 fatty acids may even be used to control autism! Researchers reported that 18 parents of children with autism reported overall health, cognition, sleep patterns, social interaction and eye contact when given fish oil, which has a huge amount of omega-3, for three months.
Another report found that a child with autism experienced a complete ceasing of all of the anxiety about everyday events when given 540mg of EPA per day. This is enormous research, and just goes to show you what good these fats can do.
Back in 1970 a pair of Danish researchers, Hans Olaf Bang and Jorn Dyerberg, traveled to Greenland to uncover why the Eskimo population there had a low incidence of heart disease despite living on a high-fat diet.
Their finding: The Eskimos' blood contained high levels of omega-3s, establishing the first link to heart health.
Rheumatoid Arthritis and Omega 3 Fatty Acid
Research shows that omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation, pain, and joint destruction in people with Rheumatoid Arthritis by reducing the activity of chemical messengers that are most likely to cause inflammation and joint destruction. Please note that it may take up to 6 months to see a reduction in Rheumatoid Arthritis inflammation and pain from a diet rich in omega 3 fatty acids.
A diet rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and the antioxidant vitamin E may also help reduce inflammation and pain in people with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Beneficial results have occurred as early as 6 weeks after beginning a diet rich in MUFA and vitamin E. Olive oil and high-oleic acid oils, such as canola and high-oleic safflower oil, are rich sources of monounsaturated fatty acids.
Arachidonic acid, an omega 6 fatty acid, is found largely in animal fats and oils. It plays a major role in stimulation of the body's inflammatory processes. Some experts have observed that a modified lactovegetarian (reduced-fat dairy/vegetable) diet, supplemented with fish oil omega 3 fatty acids and low in arachidonic acid, was highly effective in reducing the number of tender and swollen joints in people with Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Toxic "free radicals" are believed to be associated with the development and progression of many chronic diseases, including Rheumatoid Arthritis. In addition to environmental and metabolic factors, the inflammatory process of RA can create many free radicals in your body.
At high levels, these free radicals can become toxic and damage cells and tissues as they circulate through your body. Your body's primary defense against these toxic levels of free radicals is—you guessed it—antioxidant nutrients.
Antioxidants help prevent cell and tissue damage by free radicals. How? By scavenging for and "neutralizing" them. Some experts say that an adequate intake of antioxidants may even reduce the production of free radicals, which can help slow the progression of RA and may even reduce your RA symptoms and need for medication.
Antioxidant-Rich Food Sources
Blueberries, Honeydew, Cranberries, Watermelon, Kiwi, Strawberries, Dried Plums (prunes), Star Fruit, Grapes (fresh, all colors), Pineapple, Cantaloupe, Tomatoes, Citrus Fruits, Pomegranates
Broccoli, Kale, Sweet Potatoes, Collard Greens, Red Peppers, Lettuce (Romaine, Boston, Bibb), Carrots, Spinach
Green Tea (fresh-brewed), Legumes, Nuts, Whole Grains, Seeds
Types of Omega-3s
There are three types of omega-3s: DHA and EPA, found in fish and marine algae (which is where the fish get them), and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is found in plants, seeds, and nuts.
All three have health benefits, but those attributed to DHA and EPA have sparked renewed interest in recent years. Studies show that this tag team may not only reduce a person's risk of heart disease and stroke but also possibly help prevent ailments as diverse as arthritis, Alzheimer's disease, asthma, autoimmune disorders, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder - and those are just the A's. More research is needed.
Although fish oil supplements contain omega 3 fatty acids, they’re not advised as a substitute for fish or as a dietary supplement for most people. Popping a fish oil capsule won’t undo the effects of an otherwise unhealthful diet. However, if you do be sure and pick the right fish-oil supplement.
Things to look for in an omega-3 supplement
Purity - Be sure your brand is molecularly distilled to remove any contaminants.
Dosage - Ignore the total milligrams of fish oil, and focus on the EPA and DHA. You want a supplement that contains at least 500mg per dose or serving. (If your on blood thinners, consult your doctor)
Antioxidants - Once inside your body, omega-3s can quickly lose their power due to oxidation. Look for vitamin E, a.k.a. tocopherol, an antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals.
The human body needs moderate amounts of dietary fats to function properly. Fats are an essential nutrient and they are important in maintaining overall health such as brain function and mental health.
Omega 3 fatty acids – polyunsaturated fatty acids of somewhat different structure – are found mostly in seafood, especially higher-fat, cold-water varieties such as mackerel, albacore tuna, salmon, sardines, Atlantic herring, swordfish, and lake trout.
Flaxseed oil, soybean oil, and canola oil, as well as walnuts, supply omega 3 fatty acids too, in the form of alpha-linolenic acid, which converts to omega 3’s.
Flaxseed is one of the original “health food” plants, traditionally grown and used for its healing properties since the Roman Empire. It is found in many forms including cracked or whole flaxseeds, flax meal, flaxseed oil, or flaxseed powder.
Flaxseed oil is the best source of the omega 3 fatty acid alphalinolenic acid (ALA), and is a good source of omega 6. Flaxseeds are more nutritious than their oil because they contain some protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals, and lignin’s, which have antioxidant actions and may help protect against certain cancers.
Flaxseeds can be ground fresh and sprinkled on food, or bought pre-ground as flaxseed meal. Yet, the oil is preferred for its omega-3 fatty acids, and for practical purposes, as it is the easiest to use either in liquid or capsule form.
Flax also helps your body by: promoting cardiovascular and colon health, being used as a natural lubricant and rich fiber source to lower the risk of constipation, and providing fatty acids that increase the body's metabolic rate and burn excess unhealthy fats.
Add a tablespoon of flax oil or 1-2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal to your daily health regime and notice the difference. This seed may be tiny, but it is mighty.
Other Benefits of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Research suggests that the benefits of omega 3 fatty acids may help thin blood and prevent blood platelets from clotting and sticking to artery walls. That, in turn, may help lower the risk for blocked blood vessels and heart attacks and strokes. Other benefits of Omega 3 fatty acids may help prevent arteries from hardening, lower levels of triglycerides , and modestly reduce blood pressure.
We need fats for processing things like fat soluble vitamins like A,E,D and K. Without fats, these fat-soluble vitamins cannot fully nourish your body. Fats also are essential for healthy hair and skin. Fats do have a bad reputation, however some of them are actually good for us. There are fats that will actually help us and are considered good for our health. Let's take a look at the bad fats and the good fats and where they are found.
Saturated fats are considered bad fats. They are found in animal products such as meat or butter, certain vegetable oils like coconut oil, and in hydrogenated vegetable oils. These fats can raise low density lipoprotein or bad cholesterol in the blood. It is said to raise the risk of coronary artery disease. This type of fat is also found in most cheeses and in whole milk.
Trans fats are also considered bad fats. They are trans fatty acids, and they are unsaturated fats, which can raise the level of bad cholesterol. This can clog arteries and cause heart failure or disease. They also lower the good cholesterol in the blood, so this one packs a double whammy.
Some experts believe that trans fats are much more unhealthy for us than saturated fats. As a matter of fact, experts usually agree that there is no safe amount of this fat. There is no room in the healthy diet for these fats. They are found in most packaged snack goods, cookies, cakes or crackers. They are found in hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated vegetable oils and that is what most restaurants use to cook their food in. They are also in most margarines and shortenings that are made from vegetable oil.
Polyunsaturated fats are found in oils like corn, safflower, soybean and sunflower oils, nuts and seeds. They lower the bad cholesterol levels in the blood and provide us with essential fatty acids.
Monounsaturated fats are found in olive oil, canola oil, and in some nuts. These also lower the bad cholesterol levels in the blood.
You can tell the difference between the bad and good fats by looking at them. The good fats are liquid like oil, and the bad fats are solid like shortening. The good fats are the omega 3 fatty acid and omega 6 fatty acids. A non-fat diet is a non-healthy diet. Your fat intake should be no more than 25 to 30% of your caloric intake, with most of that coming from polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats. Most Americans consume about 41% of calories that come from fat.
Some good ideas to help lower cholesterol are to use vegetable oils or margarines instead of butter, lard, bacon or chicken fat. Use low-fat yogurt instead of sour cream. Try skim milk instead of whole milk, and low fat cheeses made with low fat or skim milk instead of whole milk cheeses. You can use an egg substitute or egg whites for whole eggs. Make sure you check the labels on everything to be sure that you're getting what you want.
Whole Food Antioxidant Supplements
We all know what to eat, but most of us don’t take the time to properly. In order to help people get the health benefits of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains without actually eating them, whole food nutritional supplements are becoming increasingly popular.
Whole food supplements are a simple, convenient, and inexpensive way to add more nutrition from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to your diet, every day.
Much more than the benefits of omega 3 fatty acid discussed back at the Home Page
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