Wednesday, November 5, 2014

DHA



Symptoms of omega-3 fatty acid deficiency include fatigue, poor memory, dry skin, heart problems, mood swings or depression, and poor circulation. Deficiencies in omega-3 are being blamed for many of today’s mental issues, from attention-deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD) to mood disorders such as depression. With the fast-paced, high-stress lives we lead, brain drain is a common side effect. Can’t remember where we put the car keys. Grasping at words or names. Slow, dull thinking. Lack of spark, initiative or creativity at work. Stress-induced fatigue. People of every age can benefit from proven nutritional ingredients that optimize brain function. 

A recent study published in the Journal of Nutrition found increased levels of DHA improved nonverbal reasoning, mental flexibility, working memory and vocabulary in people between age 35 and 54. Kids also benefit from omega-3. Studies show children who had increased amounts of omega-3 fatty acids performed better in school, including reading and in spelling, and had fewer behavioral problems. Babies with higher DHA levels have better mental and visual function. In addition, children who were breastfed tend to have higher IQ scores and better academic performance than those who were formula-fed; this is believed to be partly related to the high DHA content of breast milk.

Our brains are need omega-3 for memory, performance and behavioral function. Omega-3 oils improve brain function, decrease inflammation, reduce the incidence of fatal heart attacks and ischemic strokes, improve the outcome of autoimmune diseases, and improve vision.

Eico-sapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaeonic acid (DHA). These two components make up the bulk of the omega-3 oils. The ratio of EPA and DHA can vary considerably in commercial products, however, most of which have much higher concentrations of EPA. Yet, studies have shown that most of the neurological benefits of omega-3 oils are derived from the DHA component rather than the EPA component.

The average DHA and EPA intake combined in the USA is about 100-200 mg/day, far below the 650 mg of DHA plus EPA that experts recommend for healthy individuals.

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