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Saturday, January 30, 2010

The many benefits of Fish Oil

I have been taking fish oils for about 5 years. I first learned about fish oil when I was breastfeeding, and my doctor advised me to take some DHA because it was good for my baby's brain and my mood (as I suffered from post-partum depression.) Omega-3 contains 2 essential fatty acids (or EFAs), EPA and DHA. Our body can't make EFA's; they are only obtained through diet and supplementation. There is also Omega-6 (GLA) and Omega-9 (Oleic Acid). Omega 6 is also an essential fatty acid. Omega 6 is much more common in the average North American's diet, than Omega 3's are. Omega 6 is found in many common cooking oils, seeds, and nuts. On Dr. Weil's website, he states that hormones derived from Omega 6's seem to have the opposite effect of Omega 3's, increasing inflammation and blood clotting. He says that many people consume too much Omega 6. So it's important to strike the right balance. Omega 9 is not technically an essential fatty acid because our bodies can make it from unsaturated fat. Normally we don't have a shortage of Omega 9 in our diets. Omega 9 is found in olive oil and animal fats.

Fish oil has may health benefits. Here are some of them:
  • Supports heart health
  • According to the American Heart Association, Omega 3 fatty acids can decrease heart arythmias, reduce triglycerides levels, and slow growth of atherosclerotic plaque, and slightly lower blood pressure
  • good for increasing circulation
  • EPA supports balanced blood sugar
  • DHA is good for supporting learning and memory
  • DHA and Omega-6 promotes feeling of well-being & helps mood - many use it to help ease symptoms of depression
  • EPA is good for joint health and flexibility. It supports the body's anti-inflammatory response.
  • may be beneficial for rheumatoid arthritis
  • Nourishes the skin and hair
  • According to Nordic Naturals' literature and Dr. Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, RD, " those who consume fish oils tend to have better body composition and may burn fat better. Some research has shown that omega 3 fats, EPA + DHA, in fish oil may help reduce fat and even help protect against obesity."
The American Heart Association warns that high levels of fish oil can cause excessive bleeding in some people and recommends using under a doctor's supervision.


1 comment:

  1. First I would say to thank you because the information you provide is very useful for us. And I hope you will continue sharing now in coming days.