It’s Not Fishy After All
Science has long purported the benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids, from promoting brain and heart health and reducing inflammation to protecting against several chronic conditions.
Here are just a few of the health benefits of consuming Omega-3 fatty acids:
Reduce Inflammation. Long-term inflammation can contribute to almost every chronic disease, including heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce the production of molecules and substances that cause inflammation in the body.
May benefit depression and anxiety. Studies indicate that people who consume omega-3s regularly are less likely to have depression and suggest that taking supplements may actually improve symptoms. There are three types of Omega-3 fatty acids: ALA, EPA and DHA. EPA seems to be the most beneficial for depression.
May improve eye health. DHA is a major structural component of the retina of your eye. Without it, you may experience vision problems. Omega-3s are also linked to a reduced risk of macular degeneration, one of the leading causes of permanent eye damage and blindness around the world.
Could promote brain health during pregnancy and early life. Omega-3s are crucial for brain growth and development in infants. And getting enough of them while pregnant is associated with improved cognitive development, better communication and social skills, fewer behavioral problems and a decreased risk of development delay.
May improve risk factors for heart disease. Heart attacks and strokes are the world’s leading cause of death. Omega-3s can significantly reduce levels of triglycerides, raise HDL (your hero!) cholesterol, reduce inflammation and can keep platelets from clumping together.
Might benefit autoimmune diseases. In autoimmune diseases, your immune system mistakes healthy cells for foreign cells and starts attacking them. Type 1 diabetes is an example of this. Studies are showing that the use of Omega-3s are encouraging for diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease and psoriasis.
May help prevent cancer. Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in the U.S. Some older studies have shown that omega-3 intake may decrease the risk of some types of cancer, including colon, prostate and breast cancer.
When possible, try to get Omega-3 fatty acids from whole foods at least two times a week. Choose from foods such as: fatty fish—salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines, anchovies; cod liver, oysters, caviar, flaxseed, chia seeds and walnuts.
If you don’t eat fish or any of the other omega-3 rich food sources, then you may want to add a supplement to your diet. Make sure to check with your doctor or a Registered Dietitian before adding supplements to your regimen, especially if you take other medications or have health issues.
NOTE: See the REWIRE section on supplements in Phil’s 30 Day REBOOT for guidelines on how to choose a good Omega-3 fatty acid supplement.
Have you been diagnosed with heart disease, autoimmune condition, diabetes, or another chronic illness? Learn more about Phil’s 30-Day Reboot. It could change your life.www.PhilKnowsFood.com