Should You Take Essential Fatty Acids?
Is Fish Oil the Best Source for EFA's?
Ask A Healer Nutrition Series
Superior nutritional supplementation - Ultimate Omega 3's:
by Ask a Healer
Food and Your Health
If you have cardiovascular disease, afib, congestive heart failure, diabetes, or you would just like to give your body some extra ammunition against heart attacks, arterial plaque, or diabetes, please read more about the benefits of supplementing with Omega 3's.
Essential Fatty Acids Benefits (Partial List):
1. Omega-3 and Omega-6, in proper ratio, help to regulate blood clotting. (Supplements with improper ratio may nullify this benefit)
2. EFAs break down cholesterol in the body and get it out of the body.
3. EFAs are important for proper function of the thyroid and adrenals.
4. Omega-3 fatty acids play an important role in maintaining cell membrane health. Omega-3 also helps the body to naturally combat internal inflammation. These two health benefits, for me, may be the most imporant of all attributed to Omega-3's.
5. Because of impacts on cellular health and internal inflammation, omega 3's are thought to be helpful in reducing the risk of stroke or heart attack as well as other conditions including high blood pressure, depression, joint pain, etc.
6. Omega-6 may be very important for certain conditions that can sometimes create a shortage of LA, or Linoic Acid, such as Type 2 Diabetes, and Cystic Fibrosis. Also may be helpful in cases of dermatitis.
Why not just take fish oil?
Getting your essential fatty acids with fish oil has some controversial reverberations. Some are saying that many fish oils (predominantly the less expensive brands) may be extracted from less than desirable parts of the fish.
Other information coming forth indicates that fish oil affects the thymus gland adversely and, additionally, may not be helpful for those with certain conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease.
Please note: fish oil may not be the best option for those diagnosed with colon cancer either. Check with your doctor if diagnosed with this type of cancer, before taking fish oil. There is some information about studies done with mice that points to a link between taking too much fish oil and an increased risk of certain kinds of cancer. Article here: fish oil link study - MSUTODAY
New Information Shows Smart Nutrition Choice is Parent Essential Fatty Acids!
If you want to take the most potent natural form of EFA's, then skip the derivatives and stick with parent essentials. Some names given to EFA derivatives include EPA, SDA, DGLA, AA, DHA and DLA. The names for Parent Essential Fatty Acids are:
1. Parent Omega-6's - Linoic Acid, or LA
2. Parent Omega 3's - Alpha Linolenic Acid, or ALA
3. Opt for formulas that contain the optimal ratio of omega 3's to omega 6's for the most health benefits.
Note: That last is so important, especially since flaxseed has been approved by the FDA as a GM foods crop.
Health Supplements Disclaimer: Although Omega 3's are considered a heart-healthy supplement to take, quality among products vary greatly so read the small print on sources and ways of manufacture. Also, if you have a heart condition, high cholesterol, high blood pressure or diagnosed arterial plaque already, check with your doctor before adding omega 3's. Your doc will probably tell you that it may take more than omega 3's to correct your situation.