Not all Omega 3 oils are made equal!

Published : 28.02.2017 19:04:27
Categories : Nutrition , Vitamins

Types of omega 3

Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid which is vital for our body and must be consumed through our food since we do not synthesise it.

There are 3 forms of Omega-3 that our body absorbs:

  1. EPA: eicosapentaenoic acid 
  2. DHA: docosahexaenoic acid
  3. ALA: alphalinolenic acid

Health benefits of omega 3

Omega 3 is known to regulate inflammation in our cells and manage autoimmune diseases. But in order to allow the body to adapt its inflammation processes (for healing for example), one must have a balance of Omega 3 and omega 6 in the body. This balance is achieved with an approximate ratio of 1:1 for Omega 3 and 6 oils.

Other health benefits of omega 3 fatty acids include:

  • Reduce LDL cholesterol and lowers risk of heart diseases.
  • Reduce joint paint in people with rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Reduce the risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arterial walls).
  • Improve mental health such as depression, Alzheimer's, fatigue, stress, etc.
  • Reduce chronic inflammations which relate to multiple diseases.
  • Improves sleep quality.
  • Benefit child development.
  • Promotes healthy skin and hair.
  • Reduces risks of macular degeneration and promotes healthy eyes.

Long story short

EPA and DHA are found in food such as fish, grass fed full fat dairy products, hemp seed, lin/flax seed and free range egg yolks. A good alternative is a high quality fish oil supplement.

ALA are found in plants, where the body converts it into EPA and DHA to be used.

This is why I do NOT recommend a vegan diet as there are elements such as Omega 3 which vegans may be deficient on.

However, all is not lost! Algae oil has high levels of DHA which could be a viable alternative. Unfortunately, we are still waiting for studies to be conducted to prove if algae DHA is as potent as animal-sourced DHA.

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