All you need to know is that omega-3 fatty acids are good for your health. They play an important role in your diet and offer many powerful health benefits for your brain and body. Covering just the basics, there are three types of omega-3 fatty acids: α-linolenic acid (ALA), which are found in plant oils, and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), which are found in marine oils.
Common sources of ALA include edible seeds, walnut, flaxseed oil, hemp oil, and Clary sage seed oil, while you can get DHA and EPA from fish, squid oil, and eggs from chickens that were fed DHA and EPA.
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the diseases that have taken the center spot for causing the most deaths in the world and in the US are heart disease (stroke, heart attacks, and coronary artery disease) and cancer. CDC’s 2017 fact stats on Leading Causes of Death report that, on an average, around 635,260 people die from heart disease and 598,038 from cancer. A few other diseases on the list are lower respiratory infections, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes mellitus (autoimmune disease), Alzheimer’s, tuberculosis, and cirrhosis.
A Fish a Day, Keeps the Cardiologist Away
Decades ago, it was discovered that communities who ate fish on a regular basis had a lower risk of getting strokes or heart attacks. This led to the conclusion that omega-3 consumption has numerous heart health benefits. According to a study published in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism, omega-3 fatty acids break down fat in the form of triglycerides, which accelerates metabolism, lowers bad cholesterol, reduces liver fat, and lowers the production of substances and molecules that cause inflammation.
A study published in the Journal of American Heart Association found out that DPA reduces the risk of ischemic stroke. 953 incident ischemic strokes were identified (408 atherothrombotic, 256 cardioembolic and 289 undetermined subtypes). After 11.2 years, a follow-up was done and it was found out that DHA was associated with a lower risk of atherothrombotic stroke and DPA and a reduced risk of cardioembolic stroke.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids Fight Autoimmune Diseases
When your immune system starts attacking healthy cells, certain body parts start to shut down. A prime example is type-1 diabetes in which the immune system attacks your insulin-producing cells. As a result, your pancreas starts to fail. Another instance is when the cells in the brain are regulated by the immune system. So when the immune system is under attack, it affects the brain too.
According to a study published in the journal of Multiple Sclerosis, omega-3 fatty acids can reduce the risk of multiple sclerosis in adults and seniors. 267 cases of multiple sclerosis were targeted with 517 control subjects. Their dietary data was collected for 3 years.
After 3 years, the participants were divided based on their omega-3 fatty acid intake, especially from fish. The results showed that people who ate fish had decreased risk of focal cortical dysplasia (FCD). It was concluded that food items having omega-3 fatty acids, especially fish, can decrease the risk of multiple sclerosis.
And this is why omega-3 fatty acids are important for your body. Why wait for tomorrow to get on the healthy path? Try including these omega-3 fatty acids in your diet from today: mackerel, salmon, herring, oysters, sardines, anchovies, caviar, flaxseeds, walnuts, and soybeans.