5 Surprising Benefits of Omega 3
You’ve probably heard about how omega 3 fatty acids are good for your heart, but there is so much more to these powerful little health superheroes. If you have high cholesterol, and your doctor is holistically-minded, you may have even been recommended to take omega 3 supplements. There are benefits of omega 3….
Benefits of Omega 3
Benefit #1: Reduced Inflammation
Omega-3 and omega-6 are like your body’s commanding generals. Omega 6 stimulates your natural inflammatory immune response, while omega-3 soothes and reduces the inflammatory response once the danger has passed. Both of these fatty acids are essential to a healthy body, but the problem is that we have far too much omega-6 and not nearly enough omega-3 in the foods we eat. By consuming more omega-3, your body’s ability to manage its inflammatory response improves dramatically, and the omega-6 in your body moves closer to a healthy balance with omega-3.
Benefit #2: Reduced Dementia Risk
Omega-3 is essential for selective blood clotting and for building cellular membranes in the brain. Studies have shown that people who eat fish weekly (the best source of omega-3) have a lower risk of developing dementia. So not only does omega-3 protect your heart, it also protects your brain.
Benefit #3: Smarter Kids
‘If a mother consumes omega 3 during pregnancy, her child’s IQ can be boosted by more than 3.5 points. Forget listening to Mozart, just eat more fish, nuts, seeds, seaweed, free-range poultry and replace your grocery store red meat with wild game and grass-fed beef, which have more omega 3 than factory farmed beef.
Benefit #4: Lower Blood Pressure
Studies show that high dose omega-3 supplements alone can significantly reduce blood pressure. For the full high blood pressure solution, combine omega-3 through food and supplements with increased exercise, reduced salt, and sugar intake, reduced stress and increased and diversified vegetable consumption.
Benefit #5: Tasty Food
The most bioavailable form of omega-3, meaning the kind your body can utilize the best, is from food, not supplements. The benefit here is that when you get your omega 3 through food, you’re also benefitting from the social medicine of dining with your loved ones, the rich taste of many food sources of omega-3, the added benefit of the many other nutrients in quality food, and the empowerment that comes with knowing how to use food as your medicine.
The best dietary sources of omega 3 are fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, herring and sardines, wild game, grass-fed beef and poultry, pastured eggs, spinach, Brussel’s sprouts, seaweed (particularly Wakame), seeds and nuts.
For many of us, however, food sources of medicine aren’t enough. If you need more omega 3 (and it is one of the supplements I recommend most frequently) be sure to get high-quality omega 3. Poor quality omega 3 might just be the most toxic thing you can find at the health food store. Quality fish oils are harvested from sustainable fisheries, molecularly distilled, and filtered to ensure purity and maximize the removal of heavy metals, pesticides, solvents, PCBs, and other contaminants. The omega-3 supplement I recommend to my patients can be ordered here.