Omega 3 Fatty Acids, Good Type of Fat

(Dr.Waseem Razaq, )

Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the "good" types of fat. They have number of health benefits like they may help lower the risk of heart disease, depression, dementia, and arthritis. Omega 3 Fatty Acidalso called Omega-3 oils, ω−3 fatty acids or n−3 fatty acids, are polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) characterized by the presence of a double bond three atoms away from the terminal methyl group in their chemical structure. They are widely distributed in nature, being important constituents of animal lipid metabolism, and they play an important role in the human diet and in human physiology The three types of omega−3 fatty acids involved in human physiology are
1. α-linolenic acid (ALA), found in plant oils,

2. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and 3. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), both EPA and DHA commonly found in marine oils. Marine algae and phytoplankton are primary sources of omega−3 fatty acids. Common sources of plant oils containing ALA include walnut, edible seeds, clary sage seed oil, algal oil, flaxseed oil, Sacha Inchi oil, Echium oil, and hemp oil, while sources of animal omega−3 fatty acids EPA and DHA include fish, fish oils, eggs from chickens, squid oils and krill oil. Mammals are unable to synthesize the essential omega−3 fatty acid ALA and can only obtain it through diet. However, they can use ALA, when available, to form EPA and DHA.

Health Benefits of Omega 3 fatty acids:
• Good for Heart Health: Omega 3 fatty acids lower elevated level of triglycerides in blood, we know high level of this blood fat is risk for heart disease and stroke. Omega-3s can raise “good” HDL cholesterol levels. Omega-3s can lower blood pressure in people with high blood pressure. These good fats also prevent
formation of blood clots through keeping platelets from clumping together. Omega 3 fatty acids help prevent plaque formation that can restrict and harden our arteries.Omega-3 fatty acid seem to have a stabilizing effect on the heart. They can lower heart rate and help prevent arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms)
• Useful for Rheumatoid Arthritis: Studies suggest omega-3s can curb joint pain and stiffness in people with rheumatoid arthritis. A diet high in omega-3s may also boost the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory drugs.
• Can Reduce Symptoms of ADHD in Children: numerous studies have that omega-3 supplements can reduce the symptoms of ADHD. ADHD (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) is a behavioral disorder characterized by inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity.
• Can Fight Inflammation: Studies have shown a connection between higher omega-3 intake and reduced inflammation. Notably, omega-3 fatty acids can reduce the production of molecules and substances linked to inflammation, such as inflammatory eicosanoids and cytokines.
• Can Improve Eye Health: DHA, a type of omega-3, is a major structural component of the retina of our eye, it may help prevent macular degeneration, which can cause vision impairment and blindness.
• Anxiety, Depression and Brain Health:Depression is rarer in countries where people eat a lot of omega-3s. Studies indicate that people who consume omega-3s regularly are less likely to be depressed.
• Other Health Benefits of Omega 3 Fatty Acids:
 Can reduce symptoms of metabolic syndrome.
 May fight autoimmune diseases like type I Diabetes, Crohn disease, Ulcerative colitis. Rheumatoid arthritis and multiple scleroses.
 Can Fight Age-Related Mental Decline and Alzheimer’s Disease.
 Omega-3s May Help Prevent Cancer.
 Omega-3s Can Reduce Asthma in Children
 Good for Skin.
 Improve Sleep.
 Good for Bone and Joint Health.
 Reduce Fats in Liver
 Good for Asthma in children
 Good for women with menstrual pains.

Where to Get Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Following are dietary sources of Omega 3 fatty acids:
• All type of sea foods and fishes contain omega 3 fatty acids but fat fishes contain more omega 3 fatty acid and are considered as best sources of omega 3s these include:
1. Anchovies
2. Bluefish
3. Herring
4. Mackerel
5. Marlin
6. Orange roughy
7. Salmon
8. Sardines
9. Sturgeon
10. Lake trout
11. Tuna

• Not as high in omega-3 as the foods above, many other foods contain decent amounts.These include pastured eggs, omega-3-enriched eggs, meats and dairy products from grass-fed animals.

• Vegetarian Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Vegetarians can get the ALA version of omega-3 fatty acid from blue green Algae and foods such as Canola oil, Flaxseed, Chia seeds, Soybeans, Walnuts, Broccoli, Spinach, Hemp seeds, Brussels sprouts and Pursiane-- or products fortified with omega-3s.


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