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Fish Oil Is Good for your skin, your heart, your brain, what else?

Updated on November 7, 2010

Omega-3 oil has been labeled, “the miracle food of the 21st century.” It has been proven to: Promote cardiovascular health, Reduce risk of cancer, Reduce damage from the sun. But, it is a fat, how can this be good for your arteries, your belly budge, and your cellulite? Fat is a source of energy. It is used to produce cell membranes and hormones. Dietary fat is needed for absorption of vitamins like A, D, E & K. But eating small amount of the right fat is okay, and eating large amount of the wrong fats is very bad.

Fish oil is good for you. It is used to promote good cellular function. Fish oil is high in omega 3 fatty acids. The specific fatty acids are DHA and EPA. I’m not sure you need to know what the letters stand for, but to make your thirst for knowledge complete: EPA is Eicosapentaenoic and DHA is DocasaHexanenoid Acid.

Fish oil has a current claim to fame as an anti aging product. This claim has some merit. Let’s take a look. Fish oil helps to maintain elasticity and it helps balance out the moisture content in your cells. The oil helps keep skin firm, and helps you avoid wrinkles and sagging skin. The omega-3 fatty acid, specifically in the epidermal cells, helps convert essential fatty acid into prostaglandin hormones which helps to determine the degree of smoothness and moisture in the skin. Fish oil helps eczema, psoriasis, rashes, acme and anti aging benefits.

Research has shown fatty acids help to promote cardiovascular health and to reduce risk of cancer. The EPA fatty acid has also been shown to reduce the damage from over exposure to the sun.

A lack of omega-3 acid can cause dandruff and dry flaky skin. Save some money on those expensive dandruff shampoos and take extra fish oil. The fatty acid reduces the production of androgens. These are hormones that influence the production of sebum that forms in hair follicles.

Fish oil has also been proven to improve brain function. Omega 3 fatty acid is composed of 2 chemical structures, EPA and DHA. The DHA is essential to brain function. The brain is composed of almost 60% omega-3 fatty acid. The DHA is the most active fatty acid. A person with depression, suicide thoughts, and violence has been shown to be low in DHA. DHA plays an important role in the prevention of brain cancer.

The body can not make omega-3 fatty acids. You can get them through food or by supplements or both. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in dark green leafy vegetables, kale, collard greens and the like. Other sources include: algae, salmon, herring, halibut, anchovies, mackerel, tuna, trout, walnuts, and flax seeds. Fish do not produce the omega-3 oils. They get them from eating micro algae that then produces the fatty acids.

In the 1970’s a study was conducted on the Greenland Inuit Tribe. The tribe consumed a large amount of seafood, but had no cardiovascular disease. They also had reduced amount of triglycerides, reduced heart rates, reduced blood pressure and reduced signs of atherosclerosis. The Food & Drug administration gave ‘qualified health claim’ on September 8, 2004, that the benefits of DHA and EPA included reduced risk of coronary heart disease. It also helps regulate blood pressure and heart rate.

Symptoms of deficiency in fatty acids include: fatigue, poor memory, dry skins, poor circulation, heart problems, mood swings, and depression. People must have a balance between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. You have read a list of sources of omega-3 fatty acids. These are a healthy type of polyunsaturated fat found mostly in fish. Omega-6 fatty acids are also a healthy fat. It can be found in poultry, eggs, nuts, cereals and some oils. A good balanced diet can provide all the needed omega-6 fatty acids.

Unhealthy fats become solid or semi-solid at room temperature. Saturated fats found in red meats, whole-milk products, coconut oil and coconut milk are bad fats. Eating these types of fats will increase the risk of heart disease.

Next time you are dining out, think about ordering broiled, baked or boiled fish, not fried. Your heart, skin and brain will thank you.

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