Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for different organs and the body’s proper functioning. Our body can not synthesize omega-3 fatty so it is to be taken from dietary sources like fish and nuts.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are good fats that need to be taken from dietary sources like seafood, seeds, and nuts.
- Omega-3 imparts anti-inflammatory properties and thus benefits heart, brain, eyes, skin, reproductive, and bone health.
- Talk to an expert for making the most of the omega-3 benefits and avoiding its side effects.
Is it good to take Omega-3?
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for a number of important functions in the body. This fatty acid has three types including;
- Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)
- Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)
- Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
All of these Omega-3 types are involved in maintaining essential bodily functions. Some of them are listed here;
Omega-3 is an integral part of the cell membrane
Omega-3 fatty acids are an integral part of cell membranes across the body. DHA fatty acids are the most common unsaturated lipids that maintain the structure of cell membranes.
- They help in regulating the functioning of different call receptors in these membranes.
- Omega-3 fatty acids regulate optimal fetal development through the regulation of the membranous receptor during pregnancy.
- The levels of DHA decide the future performance and functioning of the body functions.
Omega-3 acts as precursor for hormones synthesis
Omega-3 fatty acids act as a starting point for the synthesis of important hormones in the body.
- The hormones synthesized by omega-3 fatty acids are responsible for blood clotting.
- They also regulate the contraction and relaxation of arterial walls.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are precursors of signaling molecules called eicosanoids. These molecules are responsible for innate immune responses in the body.
- Apart from acting as a precursor, these unsaturated fats also show a positive impact on estrogen hormone levels.
Omega-3 fatty acids for heart
Omega-3 fatty acids reduce the risk of sudden cardiac death by 50%. This is due to a number of factors.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are known as good fats. They help in maintaining HDL levels while also keeping LDL levels low.
- Low blood pressure levels and optimal blood vessel functioning contributes to the prevention of cardiovascular disorder due to taking n-3 rich diet.
- Omega-3 is also known to slow down the production of plaque in the arteries and reduce inflammation. This prevents atherosclerosis and thus heart attack.
- EPA and DHA fatty acids prevent the blood from clotting. This prevents ischemia, angina pain, and other related heart diseases.
- The risk of heart disease in patients with diabetes mellitus and high triglycerides is reduced by adding omega-3 rich to the diet.
Consult a heart specialist to discuss your cardiac health and omega-3 supplementation.
Omega-3 helps the immune system
Autoimmune diseases are those during which the body attacks its own cells resulting in inflammation. The primary role of polyunsaturated fats like omega-3 in autoimmune diseases is due to their anti-inflammatory properties.
- Omega-3 fatty acids produce eicosanoids which regulate the inflammatory processes in the body. These molecules reduce the intensity of inflammation.
- Omega-3 is known to prevent a number of autoimmune diseases including rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis.
- These fats are an integral part of the cell membrane of the immune cells which plays a key role in managing the autoimmune disease-induced response of the immune cells.
- Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil can also improve the symptoms of pain during autoimmune diseases.
- The anti-inflammatory properties of omega-3 make it useful for reducing menstrual pains and osteoporosis in women.
Omega-3 is good for bones and joints
Omega-3 fatty acids promote bones and joint health by reducing inflammation and stiffness.
- Fish oil supplements are known for ages to reduce joint pain
- Omega-3 fatty acids promote serum calcium levels. They also have a positive impact on bone formation.
- These beneficial fatty acids increase bone density.
- Joint mobility is considerably increased by omega-3 fatty acids as they promote the lubrication of joints.
- Furthermore, omega-3 fatty acids promote cartilage health. This reduces the risk of osteoporosis as well as joint stiffness.
Read Also: Vitamin-D-rich foods
Omega-3 fish oil for clear skin
Omega-3 fatty acid is an important ingredient in many skin cosmetic products due to its ability to rejuvenate the skin and gives an ultimate glow. The best among all the types of these fatty acids for the skin is DHA.
- The fats reduce skin dryness and roughness by moisturizing the skin. This helps in treating irritation and dermatitis.
- Omega-3 fatty acids regulate the oil production of the skin and improve hydration.
- N-3 fatty acids also minimize the signs of aging and treat red, and itchy skin.
- The anti-inflammatory effects of omega-3 help in managing skin conditions due to inflammation such as eczema.
Do you know how to get glowing skin naturally at home?
Omega fatty acids shrink tumor cells
Omega-3 fatty acids are very common in nutritional therapy for cancer patients. They suppress the growth of tumors, especially in breast and prostate cancer.
- Omega-3 slows down cell division and thus cancer development by reducing inflammation in the body.
- These fats stop the development of new blood vessels within the cancer cells and help prevent cancerous growth.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are known to improve cancer treatment tolerance in patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
- The antineoplastic activity of unsaturated omega-3 fatty acids reduces the incidence of mortality due to cancer.
Omega-3 for managing depression
Polyunsaturated long-chain omega-3 fatty acids have a beneficial impact on neuropsychiatric disorders such as depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia.
- A diet rich in these fats decreases the chances of mental disorders.
- The EPA type of omega-3 reduces the chances of depression by promoting neurotransmitter growth in the brain including serotonin and dopamine.
- The severity and frequency of manic episodes during bipolar disorder are considerably reduced in people who take a diet rich in omega-3.
- The DHA type of omega-3 is known to aid good sleep. This helps promote sound mental health.
Read: Foods for Depression
Omega-3 promotes eye health
Omega-3 fatty acids are concentrated in high levels in the eyes and are known to contribute to the maintenance of eye health.
- Omega-3 prevents many eye diseases including glaucoma. Age-related macular degeneration in adults, and dry eyes syndrome.
- EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids are the most potent for eye health as they reduce inflammation and related symptoms such as itching, burning, and redness.
- Omega-3 for dark circles makes it an important ingredient in your skin-care regime. This is because of its ability to improve the blood flow to the eyes.
Note: 2000-3000mg of fish oil with food is recommended for dry eyes.
Also, read Flaxseed benefits for eyes.
Omega-3 for brain
60% of the brain is composed of essential fats including omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 promotes brain health and prevents many associated disorders.
- Studies have found that omega-3 fatty acids improve the cognitive functioning of the brain and brain cells’ communication.
- Omega-3 during pregnancy is important for women as it plays an integral role in the development of the brain in the fetus.
- The risk of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer, Parkinson’s disease, and dementia is reduced by consuming sufficient omega-3 fatty acids. This is because it prevents cognitive deterioration.
- Omega-3 in children prevents ADHD and improves the ability to concentrate.
Infant supplementation with Omega-3
N-3 fatty acids are crucial in infants as they promote brain and eye health. These fatty acids promote retinal development and many important cognitive functions in infants.
- Adequate levels of omega-3 promote social, physical, and cognitive functioning in children.
- Studies have shown that the development of mental and motor skills in infants is directly associated with omega-3 levels.
Omega-3 particularly DHA is important for infants that can be given through milk formulas or breastmilk.
Note: Babies need 0.5mg of omega-3 daily from birth to 12 months.
Omega-3 for fertility
Omega-3 fatty acid benefits include the promotion of sexual health in both males and females.
- Omega-3 for females is essential for regulating reproductive hormones. This regulates ovulation and thus the menstrual cycle. Hormonal regulation also plays a key role in women with PCOS for managing their symptoms.
- Blood flow to the uterus is increased due to omega-3. This increases libido and sexual activity in females.
- Studies have shown that omega-3 in men and women improves their egg and sperm quality and quantity. A sufficient amount of omega-3 in these germ cells improves their performance and motility.
- Omega-3 is also good for erectile dysfunction, especially in men under 60 years of age.
- Supplementing men and women with omega-3 in sufficient amounts improves their fertility and ability to conceive, drastically.
A diet containing omega-3 fatty acids
The omega-3 fatty acids can not be synthesized by the body so they must be taken from outside sources to maintain their levels. The American heart association recommends eating fish twice a week for promoting good heart health.
Some of the dietary options to keep your omega-3 levels adequate include;
- Fish such as mackerel, tuna, salmon, and sardines
- Fish oil which is also available in capsules known as “fish capsules”
- Nuts such as Walnuts and Almonds
- Flaxseeds, chia seeds, and hemp seeds
- Green, leafy vegetables
Read Also: Pumpkin seed benefits for females.
Caution: The most common side effects of fish oil are indigestion and gas. Getting a supplement with a coating might help. Omega-3 supplements (DHA/EPA) can make bleeding more likely.
If you are aiming to get an omega-3-rich diet or supplementation, talk to an expert for making an informed decision.
1. Is it good to take an Omega-3 every day?
It is suggested that consuming at least 3g daily of fish oil or omega-3 fats is safe with many health benefits. However, you can consult a doctor for expert advice.
2. Does Omega-3 increase testosterone?
Omega-3 fatty acids act as a precursor for the synthesis of many important hormones in the body. It is also important to keep robust levels of testosterone in males.
3. Can you take Omega-3 when trying to conceive?
Taking omega-3 supplementation can increase the chances of conceiving as it improves fertility in both men and women. Omega-3 also maintains hormone levels in check and improves the quality of both sperm and eggs.