The use of fish oil supplements is a highly effective way to increase your intake of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids. This is extremely important today, as many of the prepared, or “engineered” foods we consume have been stripped of their omega-3 acids, and the human body cannot manufacture these fatty acids. Omega-3 acids have been linked to increased ability of neuro-transmissions. In other words, omega-3 acids allow faster transmission of information in the brain, muscles, and other bodily conductors.
In addition, emerging research indicates that depressed omega-3 levels can contribute to such electrical transmission-related health issues, such as atrial fibrillation – an irregular heartbeat. Unfortunately, due to their chemical structure, omega-3 acids are very susceptible to decay. This means they go rancid faster than other types of fatty acids – particularly omega-6 acids. Food manufacturers have engineered foods for a long shelf life, which means they have lowered or eliminated omega-3 acids, and increased the amount omega-6 acids. The problem with this is that while the omega-6 acids in the foods permit a longer shelf life, they starve the body of omega-3 acids.
In addition, research indicates that an over-balance of omega-6 vs omega-3 acids is detrimental to health on a variety of levels. Our “Western Diet” is starving us of one the critical nutrients our body needs most! Fortunately, we can correct this by altering our diet. One way is to consume more fish, particularly the oily species, such as salmon. Another way, more convenient, and more directly effective, is to take a regular fish oil supplement.
However, for the supplement to be effective and to experience the fish oil benefits, you must ensure that you are getting a complete balance of all the omega-3 fatty acids. The “big three” are: alpha-linoleic acids (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acids (EPA) and docasahexonoaic acids (DHA). In addition, there are five other acids, DPA, HPA, ETA, ETA(3) and SDA are equally important, those necessary in smaller amounts. When assimilated in combination, they are far more effective than when taken in individual dosages. Be sure to look for the complete family of omega-3 acids when you are shopping for a supplement.
Also, avoid supplements which include strange or unlabeled oils. In other words, always look for a supplement in which the entire content of fish oils adds up to 100% of the oil content.