Omega-3 Benefits, Uses and Tips

You might think that fats are not good, but there is a type, also know as omega - 3 fatty acids, from which you should try to include more in your diet. I wrote here where you can find this amazing gift from nature. Omega-3 fatty acids is a collective name given to a group of polyunsaturated fats that include acids with names almost impossible to pronounce such as: eicosapentaenoic acid, docosahexaenoic acid and alpha linolenic acid. It has a key role in the mechanisms of our bodies, starting with controlling blood clotting and blood pressure to reducing of the inflammations.

Scientists started to research omega-3 fatty acids when they observed that Eskimos weren't prone to rheumatoid arthritis or heart diseases, although their diet was mostly made out of fish, seal meat and whale oil. All of these are high in omega-3 fatty acids so it didn't took them long to realize that these acids are essential for our health.

Reduce the risk of heart diseases

Heart diseases are one of the most common causes of death in Great Britain. Myocardial infarction is a serious condition where the supply of blood to the heart is suddenly blocked and it needs to be treated as quickly as possible. A lot of studies showed that a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids can reduce the risk of myocardial infarction and cerebrovascular accidents ( or stroke). How do these fat acids actually help?

  • lower blood pressure,

  • reduce the ability of platelets to form blood clots,

  • lower the triglycerides, the fats in our bodies that are associated with heart diseases,

  • reduce the inflammation of the arteries and seem to accelerate the pumping rhythm of the heart

Here is the advice about eating fish for women who are or might become pregnant, breastfeeding mothers, and young children from FDA and EPA.

If you don't like fish, there are always alternatives like fish capsules.

The oils will keep bone and joint pain away

For bone and joint health, please considerate omega-3 fatty acids. They inhibit the inflammatory effects of some chemicals as prostaglandins, a great choice for people who suffer from joint pain and stiffness caused by rheumatoid arthritis. Actually, these work so well that people addicted to aspirin or other analgesics will lower their doses after they start taking fish oil supplements.

Apparently, what is good for joints is good for bones too, mostly for postmenopausal women, that either have osteoporosis, or have the risk of getting this disease. There's a small study that discovered that people who took omega-3 fatty acids for 18 months they have denser bones and are less prone to bone fractures than the people who didn't took omega-3 fatty acids.

Plenty of other uses:

  • reduces intestinal pain. A research that lasted a year, on people suffering from Crohn's disease (a long-term condition where the gut becomes inflamed) revealed that 69% of the patients who took omega-3 fatty acids supplements, got rid of the symptoms in comparison with the 28% of people who didn't took these supplements.

  • improving mental health. Some scientists assume that the rising numbers of depressions mostly due to lack of fish consumption. When they had under observation 44 persons with bipolar disorders, they discovered that 2 out of 3 persons showed improvement after taking fish oil.

  • keeping under control disseminated lupus erythematosus. Apparently this grave auto-immune disease is improving in the case of people who have taken fish oil, mostly because omega-3 fatty acids reduce the inflammations and prevents the immune system from overreacting.

  • relieving menstrual pain. Women that take omega-3 fatty acids have have less menstrual pain.

  • preventing cancer. There are plenty of studies and researches showing that fish oils can prevent breast cancer and colon cancer.

  • ther diseases that can be improved with the help of omega-3 fatty acids: arthritis, bronchial asthma, Crohn's disease, bursitis and tendonitis, depression, eczema, gout, hypertension, high cholesterol, palpitations, dry skin, memory loss issues, menstrual issues, prostate problems, nails problems, psoriasis, wrinkles, hives.

Facts about fish oils

  • omega-3 fatty acids from other sources except fish don't have the same benefits like the ones you can find in fish oil or cod liver.

  • keep the supplements in the fridge to avoid their alteration.

  • usually, the daily dose recommended is 3000- 5000 mg. You can avoid the usual side effects - bloating, flatulence, diarrhea, or a slight smell of fish - by dividing the daily dose in 2 or 3 smaller doses.

  • some specialists who use natural remedies believe that the omega-3 fatty acids from fish oils should be taken during the summer, and that in winter we should take cod liver oil because this is rich in vitamin D. (during the summer we take our vitamin D directly from the sun)

  • pregnant women should not take cod liver oil because its very rich in vitamin A.

  • the excess of fish oil can influence may affect blood clotting: do not take more than 6000 mg /daily.

  • if you have diabetes, limit the daily dose to 2000 mg/daily, a higher dose will increase the blood sugar

  • do not take fish oil if you are allergic to fish.

*This article has no intention in advising to treat or cure any illness nor has any intention to persuade readers into taking any action following the actions in the article.

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