Ever wondered why Fish oil is good for you?
The Lowdown on Fish Oil: Reasons to Top up your Omega 3 Intake
You probably already know that Fish Oil is great for your heart – and you may have heard that it offers a few other health benefits too. Plus, you might be aware that these effects are due to the high levels of Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) that Fish Oil contains.
But what ARE Omega-3 EFAs? How exactly do they support your health and wellbeing? And what other benefits could you receive from making them a regular part of your diet?
Here’s the lowdown on Fish Oil and how it can help you.
Omega-3 EFAs – a quick primer
Omega-3 EFAs – a quick primer
Your body needs a wide range of nutrients to function and carry out all the processes involved in daily living. Some of those nutrients – like vitamins and minerals – are widely recognised. Others, such as the amino acids that make up proteins, and fatty acids, are less well known.
Fatty acids are found throughout your entire body: they’re important components of each and every cell membrane. The tissues in your brain, eyes and nerves are all rich in fatty acids – and your body also uses them in your immune response, and to create important hormones.
Generally speaking, fatty acids are divided into two categories. If your body can synthesise them from other compounds on its own, they’re called “non-essential”. If not, they’re called “essential”. So, in short, Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids are a family of fatty acid nutrients that your body needs, but can’t create on its own.
Benefits you might not realise that Fish Oil could offer
We mentioned heart health in the first paragraph of this article because Omega-3 rich Fish Oil is famous for helping to support the health and function of the cardiovascular system.
But while Fish Oil’s heart health benefits are certainly important, they’re just the tip of the iceberg.
Here are some other ways that Omega-3 EFAs can support your wellbeing:
- Helping to maintain healthy joints: studies have shown that Omega-3 EFAs can support healthy joint cartilage, which is essential for joints that move easily and comfortably.
- Supporting your eye health and vision: we mentioned above that the tissues in your eyes contain high levels of fatty acids. These fatty acids include Omega 3 EFAs, which your body needs for normal visual function, and to maintain a healthy retina.
- Supporting healthy brain and cognitive function: EFAs may also support learning, memory, attention and concentration – all areas of cognitive health – in older adults.
- Supporting normal mood balance: your body also uses EFAs in the process of synthesising important neurotransmitters (brain chemicals) such as serotonin and dopamine. These two neurotransmitters play a major role in regulating mood, so good EFA intake may support a balanced, even mood.
- Helping to maintain healthy skin: because EFAs are such an integral part of cell membrane structure, they play an essential role in helping to maintain smooth and vibrant skin.
With so many potential benefits, isn’t it time you topped up YOUR Omega-3 Fish Oil intake?
 Simopolous, A. The omega-6/omega-3 fatty acid ratio and genetic variation. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 2008;17 (S1):131-134