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[5 min read] Top 10 health benefits of omega-3 for your patients
Omega-3 fatty acids have many powerful health benefits for both the body and the brain. So, what are some of the top science-based health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids for your patients?
1. Omega-3 can fight mental health disorders
Studies indicate that people who consume omega-3s regularly are less likely to be depressed, and people with depression or anxiety tend to see an improvement in symptoms when they start taking omega-3 supplements. Omega-3 can also help reduce the frequency of mood swings in people with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and prevent age-related mental decline including Alzheimer’s disease.
2. Omega-3 can improve eye and skin health
Vision problems can arise when patients don’t get enough DHA (a type of omega-3 comprising a major structural component of the retina). Getting enough omega-3 is linked to a reduced risk of macular degeneration as well as improved skin health.
3. Omega-3 during pregnancy has huge benefits in early life
Getting enough omega-3 during pregnancy is associated with many benefits for the child including higher intelligence, better social skills, fewer behaviour problems, and decreased risk of ADHD, autism and cerebral palsy. Evidence also suggests that omega-3 can reduce symptoms of ADHD and asthma in children.
4. Omega-3 can decrease risk of heart disease
Omega-3 can reduce risk of triglycerides, reduce blood pressure, raise good HDL cholesterol levels, prevent blood clots, prevent artery plaque build-up, and reduce the body’s inflammatory response.
5. Omega-3 can reduce symptoms of metabolic syndrome and fight inflammation
Omega-3 fatty acids can improve insulin resistance, inflammation and heart disease risk factors in people with metabolic syndrome. Higher omega-3 intake is also linked to a general reduction in inflammation.
6. Omega-3 can fight autoimmune diseases
Getting enough omega-3 during early life is linked to reduced risk of many autoimmune diseases including diabetes, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and psoriasis.
7. Omega-3 can reduce fat in the liver
Supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids reduces liver fat and inflammation in people with non-alcohol fatty liver disease.
8. Omega-3 may improve bone and joint health
Studies indicate that omega-3 improves bone strength by boosting calcium, suggesting a reduced risk of osteoporosis.
9. Omega-3 can alleviate menstrual pain
Studies suggest that omega-3 is better than ibuprofen at reducing menstrual pain.
10. Omega-3 may improve sleep
Low levels of omega-3 fatty acids are associated with sleep problems in both adults and children, but studies have found that supplementing with omega-3 increases the length and quality of sleep.
Want to learn more about managing your patients’ nutrition concerns in general practice? Upskill in Medical Nutrition Management.