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Omega-3 Fatty Acids – Benefits For The Body

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Omega-3 is a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) that protect cell membranes and internal organs from destruction. Without these compounds, the full functioning of the nervous, immune, and cardiovascular systems, adequate synthesis of tissue hormones, prostaglandins, and proper metabolism of vital substances are impossible. In addition, they suppress inflammatory processes, improve joints, and fight emotional disorders, and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Omega-3 lipids are classified as essential fats because the human body does not synthesize them on its own. Therefore, they should be regularly supplied with food.

Omega 3 and the cardiovascular system

Firstly, omega 3s can lower blood lipids, i.e., they have hypolipidemic properties. They regulate the concentration of inflammatory factors in the muscle cells of the heart (respectively, have an anti-inflammatory effect), and lead to the expansion of blood vessels. They also have antiarrhythmic properties. Omega-3s help reduce blood viscosity and reduce the risk of blood clots. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids slightly reduce blood pressure, normalize blood lipid composition, reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, reduce the risk of sudden coronary death, and reduce the risk of an acute heart attack.

Omega-3 and the human brain

Lack of omega-3 fatty acids can lead to early aging of the brain and a decrease in intellectual abilities.

Omega-3 and human skin

Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids inhibit the aging of human skin and do so in several ways. They have strong antioxidant properties that prevent reactive oxygen species from damaging the skin. Omega-3 fatty acids effectively stop chronic inflammation, thereby preventing collagen from breaking down and slowing down aging. Omega-3 acids fight not only skin inflammation but also internal organs, joints, ligaments, and muscles. Omega-3 acids inhibit the key mechanisms of skin aging, and sensitivity to external influences becomes approximately as in youth.

Omega-3 and the human musculoskeletal system

Doctors identify 3 main mechanisms of action of omega-3 fatty acids, which contribute to the preservation of bone and joint health.

The 1st mechanism is the activation of bone formation processes at a young age and the prevention of bone thinning with age, which leads to the development of osteoporosis. Omega-3 acids help to preserve the elasticity of the connective tissue elements of the joints (tendons, ligaments, joint capsules), and articular cartilage and improve the properties of intra-articular lubrication.

The 2nd mechanism is slowing down the breakdown of collagen fibers in articular cartilage in inflammatory and degenerative-dystrophic joint diseases.

The 3rd mechanism is a decrease in the activity of inflammatory reactions in the joint tissues, i.e. elimination of inflammation and pain.

Omega-3 as one protector

Speaking of omega-3 fats, it is worth mentioning their impact on carcinogenesis. Statistics and various studies show that eicosanoids formed from omega-3 fats have a suppressive effect on degenerated human cells.

The daily requirement for omega-3 acids is 1 to 2 grams, depending on gender, age, health status, and region of residence.

In addition, the need for healthy fats increases in depressive and autoimmune conditions (thyroiditis, lupus erythematosus, Alzheimer’s disease); in the cold season; intense sports; vascular atherosclerosis; and oncological diseases. Symptoms of omega-3 deficiency: dry skin, brittle nails, hair loss, dandruff, prolonged depression, apathy, allergic skin rashes, stool disorders, constipation, joint pain, slow wound healing, high blood pressure, fatigue, weakness, disability, mental retardation (in infants and preschoolers), decreased immunity, frequent colds.

Signs of excess polyunsaturated fatty acids:

  1. Prolonged diarrhea;
  2. Low blood pressure;
  3. Dysfunctions of the digestive tract;
  4. Reduced blood clotting, and as a result, hemorrhages in the joints (hemarthrosis), and internal and external bleeding.

Contraindications to the use of substances

  1. Hypercalcemia;
  2. Individual intolerance;
  3. Hyperfunction of the thyroid gland;
  4. Tuberculosis (in the active phase).

Sources of omega 3

Sardine fish oil, cod liver, salmon fish oil, sardine, salmon, mackerel, tuna, flaxseed oil, peanut leaves (fresh), flax seeds (fresh), walnut oil, walnut.

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Written by Bella Adams

I'm a professionally-trained, executive chef with over ten years in Restaurant Culinary and hospitality management. Experienced in specialized diets, including Vegetarian, Vegan, Raw foods, whole food, plant-based, allergy-friendly, farm-to-table, and more. Outside of the kitchen, I write about lifestyle factors that impact well-being.

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