The quest for wellness is often the pursuit of equilibrium.
In the body, as in life, the goal is balance. Within our bodies, the lack, or excess, of certain nutrients can result in diseases, inefficiencies, and chronic health conditions.
One of the nutrient groups that require this balancing act is the potent omega fatty acid.
What are these? Omega fatty acids are polyunsaturated fats. The “poly” means multiple and “unsaturated” indicates the double bonds in the chemical structure. There are a variety of omega fatty acids and they are classified and named based on the location of the first double bond in the fatty acid chain. Most have heard about Omega-3 fatty acids, but also important are the Omega-6 and Omega-9.
Fats play a vital role in peak health and performance. Let’s review the most popular and its benefits first.
Most health-conscious individuals have heard of Omega-3 fatty acids. These fats are essential to bodily function (including the cardiovascular and nervous systems), yet they cannot be produced by the body. This being the case, Omega-3s must be acquired through diet or supplementation.
There are three types of Omega-3 fatty acids: ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).
Omega-3s have been studied extensively for their numerous health benefits. Health-focused individuals who get adequate Omega-3s experience a variety of advantages:
Lowers Blood Pressure
Decreases plaque in the arteries
Raises “good” HDL cholesterol
Reduces abnormal heart rhythm
Decreases the risk of heart attack
Prevents blood clots and risk of stroke
Decreased Depression and Anxiety
Studies indicate depression and anxiety symptoms lessen after beginning an Omega-3 regimen.
Sustains Eye Health
DHA (an Omega-3 fatty acid) is a foundational part of the retina structure. Consuming enough Omega-3s may help prevent macular degeneration.
Enhanced Fetal/Infant Development
Omega-3s are vital for fetal development in the womb as well as for developing infants. In fact, many formulas on the market are fortified with DHA for brain and eye development, leading to better cognitive function.
Improves Metabolic Function
Improves insulin resistance
Reduces overall inflammation
The Lesser-Known Omegas
Although Omega-3 wins the popularity contest, Omega-6 and -9 also play crucial roles in optimal health.
Another polyunsaturated fat, this nutrient is considered “essential” and must be obtained through diet or supplementation.
Although we need less of this fat, Omega-6 fatty acids:
Stimulate skin and health growth
Maintain bone density and health
Regulate metabolic systems for decreased body fat
Sustain reproductive health
A monounsaturated fat, this fatty acid is considered “non-essential” as the body can produce it. However, it’s still important to supplement with additional amounts because it helps:
Increase HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol) and decrease LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol), possibly helping to reduce plaque buildup in the arteries
Potentially boost energy and moody
Improve insulin sensitivity
Potentially enhance cognitive function, and may be beneficial for those with Alzheimer’s Disease
Traditional Western diets often fall short of the ideal Omega fatty acid proportions. Frequently, our diets contain too many Omega-6 fatty acids, but too few Omega-3.
You may not have enough of these fats in your current regimen if you experience:
Problems with skin (such as irritation or dryness)
Depression and anxiety
Joint pain, stiffness
Brittle hair or nails
Cardiovascular issues (including high cholesterol)
If you are not obtaining the necessary amounts of Omega fatty acids through diet alone, it may be time for a supplement.
Talk to your health care provider about the types of supplements available, including those with a broad spectrum of the various Omega fatty acids, such as our Omega Complex.
The LiveWise Omega Complex supplement harnesses the power of non-animal Omega fatty acids found in microalgae oil, Ahiflower®, and astaxanthin – ingredients that are better absorbed by the body as well as vegan and sustainably sourced.
Through this simple daily regimen, individuals can experience the range of Omega fatty acid benefits, creating the desired balance for optimal health.
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