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What are Omega-3 Fatty Acids?

2019-05-27

Fatty acids are the cornerstones of fat, and they are necessary for our overall well being. Without fat, our bodies would not be able to work the way that they should, and many aspects of our health would suffer, including our vision health. Fatty acids are also important because they are needed in order to produce the compounds that help support different areas of cardiovascular health like blood pressure, heart rate, as well as blood clotting.

 

One type of fatty acid called essential fatty acids is especially important because our bodies cannot produce them. Essential fatty acids must be obtained from our diet.

 

Omega-3 fatty acids and vision health

The essential fatty acids that we are talking about today can be extremely beneficial for vision health, including DHA and EPA. Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for eye health, so many studies have found that they are required for eye health as young as infancy, and these fatty acids have been found to help with vision development in babies. Studies have found the importance of omega-3 fatty acids in a mother's diet which is breastfeeding or DHA-supplemented formula for infants who are formula fed.

 

Omega-3 fatty acids have also been found to be just identically important for adult vision. Studies have found that omega-3’s are highly important for protecting against macular degeneration as well as those who suffer from dry eyes. A study done in 2008 found that those who consumed oily fish once or more per week had a lower chance of developing neovascular macular degeneration. This is a promising study supporting the importance of omega-3 fatty acids in the diet and vision health.   

 

How to get more omega-3 fatty acids into your diet?

Luckily, there are a number of different ways you can get omega-3 fatty acids into your diet. Fish is the most well-known source of omega-3 fatty acids, especially fatty fish like salmon. You can also get omega-3 fatty acids into your diet by enjoying certain plant-based foods like flax and chia seeds. All of these are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids and can be enjoyed as part of your regular diet. If you eat fish, strive to get wild-caught fish to get the highest quality and to avoid any unnecessary toxin exposure. Farm-raised fish tends to be much in certain contaminants.

 

Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements

Another option if you find that you don’t get enough omega-3’s in your diet is to supplement. If you are choosing to supplement with omega-3’s, it is important to make sure you are choosing a high-quality product to avoid any toxin exposure such as mercury. You will also need to get to know the type of fatty acid. Is it coming from a marine source or a plant-based source? There are a number of different fish oil supplements available, so you will need to be sure that the product exceeds or at least meets GOED standard for purity as well as guaranteed by a third party testing. This will help to ensure that the supplement you are taking is of high quality. You will also need to be mindful of the concentration of EPA and DHA. With a higher concentration, you will be able to have fewer capsules with a lower concentration of EPA and DHA.

 


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