Omega-3 Fatty Acids: The Secret to Better Health & Weight Loss
Inflammation is at the core of most serious diseases, including colon cancer, autoimmune diseases, Alzheimer’s, coronary artery disease, rheumatoid arthritis, insulin resistance, diabetes and even obesity. The human diet has evolved to include more genetically modified foods, more processed carbohydrates, more trans fats, and more omega-6 fatty acids. These all influence inflammation in the body by increasing a hormone called prostaglandin E2, which is linked to over 80% of all chronic disease.
A recent World Health Organization study showed that well over 95% of people in the United States are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids.
The symptoms of deficiency are somewhat difficult to determine as they could arise from any number of health issues. Researchers believe that the vagueness of symptoms is contributing to the large deficiency percentage found in the United States. The known symptoms for individuals deficient in omega-3 fatty acids are:
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Dry or itchy skin
- Brittleness in the hair & nails
- Impaired imune system (frequent colds)
- Lack of concentration
- Lack of physical endurance
- Weight gain
- Joint discomfort
The culprit is an unbalanced omega-6 and omega-3 ratio.
In the past, the human diet consisted of a much higher intake of fatty acids than it does today. In fact, the ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids for the average American now stands at approximately 25:1. At such extreme levels, research has proven you are almost guaranteed to have a chronic incurable degenerative disease at some point in your life. This is an extreme shift, as the ratio throughout human evolution was once 2:1, which is the ideal ratio for optimum health.
You must strike the right balance between your omega-3s and omega-6s in order to effectively reduce inflammation in your body, to balance hormones and to lose weight. When you ingest omega-3 fatty acids, it replaces your omega-6 acids in cell membranes. In order to properly function, the cell membrane has to maintain its fluid structure and integrity. A cell without a healthy membrane is like a home without walls. A cell membrane that is unhealthy will not hold in the proper nutrients. They also lose their communicative abilities to transmit messages back and forth to other cells.
Cell membranes are made up of mostly fat. Because of this, the health and vitality of the cell membrane is predicated on the types of fat people consume. For example, saturated fats are “bad” fats, which become hardened at room temperature. Diets that include high amounts of saturated fat lead to cell membranes that are thick, void of elasticity, and lacking fluid. On the other hand, a diet rich in fish oils and other omega-3 fatty acids, which are mono-unsaturated and poly-unsaturated fats, or “good” fats, produce cell membranes that function well and have proper fluidity levels.
Maintaining a healthy and flexible cell membrane is vitaly important for people trying to lose weight to assure an efficient transport of glucose in the cells.
Other health benefits of omega-3s are well established. Their benefits include:
- Pain mitigation – omega-3s inhibit inflammation, which leads to a reduction in pain within the body.
- Brain function and concentration – fish oil has been linked to improved memory recall, increased focus, and logical reasoning in adults.
- Depression – studies done at the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom, among other institutions, have shown omega-3s have a positive effect on the symptoms associated with depression and bipolar disorder.
- Childhood disorders – ADD and ADHD have been linked to a deficiency in fish oils. There is anecdotal evidence that omega-3s reduce the symptoms associated with ADD and ADHD.
- Weight Loss – Omega-3 slows down absorption of food in your digestive track. A slower pace of digestion delays the release of sugar into the bloodstream and stabilizes your sugar and insulin levels, which will make you less hungry.
- Cardiovascular health – current research shows that the DHA, DPA and EPA in fish oil has a positive effect by reducing the risk of heart disease in adults 18 years of age and older.
- Heart attack and stroke – Omega-3s are the good kind of fats that promote cellular and heart health. Data shows that consuming fish oil reduces the risk of heart attack or stroke by nearly 30%.
Research indicates that the average person should consume a minimum of 2-3 grams per day of EPA/DHA found in omega-3 fish oil. It also indicates that people who are overweight, obese, insulin resistant, or type 2 diabetic should consume a minimum of 3 grams or more per day of EPA/DHA. I have found a great product that will supply you with the necessary omega-3s: the RxOmega-3 Factors.
Omega-3 fatty acids should always be taken with anti-oxidants to counteract free radicals caused by lipid peroxides (oxidization of the oil). We recommend taking the Amino Diet’s exclusive Dual Support supplement which is packed with strong anti-oxidants, with your omega 3 fatty acids.
For more information regarding omega-3 fatty acids, the dual support supplement or the Amino Diet weight loss program call, 1-800-980-7208 and speak with one of our certified Health Coaches.
Author: Dr. Humble Finsand