Omega 3 Depression Treatment and Relief
Want to find out about omega 3 depression relief and treatment properties?
Omega-3 fatty acids, a type of polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA), are normally referred to as essential fatty acids mainly because the human body does not produce these fatty acids, and they must be obtained through food, supplements, etc. Some very good sources of omega 3 fatty acids include salmon, herring, sardines, mackerel, halibut, tuna, and certain forms of algae, nuts, and oils.
The reason why omega-3 fatty acids are considered essential to humans is because they help in maintaining appropriate growth and development of the human body. In addition, they also play a significant role in brain chemistry and brain functioning. Thus, besides omega 3 depression relief benefits, these essential fatty acids have a whole host of other health benefits and functions.
The three most commonly known omega-3 fatty acids are alpha-linolenic acid or ALA, eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA, and docosahexaenoic acid or DHA. Post consumption, the human body converts ALA into EPA and DHA, which are then used by the human body.
Omega-3 fatty acids help to prevent cardiovascular diseases, arthritis, cancers, and also depression. How do omega 3 depression benefits come about? These fatty acids accumulate in brain tissue. In the process, they help improve memory and positively influence behavioral and cognitive functional aspects of the brain.
Just as the presence of omega-3 fatty acids works to the betterment of brain functioning, a decrease in or lack of omega-3 levels work to the detriment of the human body, possibly resulting in fatigue, memory loss, cardiovascular problems, dry skin, and, yes, depression too. The bad news is that modern day diets have become rather deficient in omega 3 fatty acids. Therefore, it is becoming increasingly important to increase one's intake of omega-3 fatty acids, in order to help prevent various physical and psychological conditions, and of course to harness the known omega 3 depression prevention and treatment benefits.
As we talk about omega 3 depression benefits, another important factor to consider with regard to omega-3 fatty acids is the need to maintain an appropriate balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Omega 6 fatty acids are another type of essential fatty acids which are needed for healthful bodily function. However, modern day diets have not only become low in omega 3s, but contain way too much omega 6 fatty acids (thanks largely to fried foods and certain vegetable oils).
Now, omega 6s promote inflammation in the body, while omega 3's alleviate it, so an unhealthy imbalance skewed towards the former can raise one's risk of many dangerous health conditions.
It is said that, according to certain scientific studies and research reports, a balanced diet should include only 2-4 times more omega-6 fatty acids as compared to omega-3 fatty acids. However, a regular American diet today contains 15 to 25 times more omega-6 fatty acids as compared to omega-3 fatty acids, and this particular imbalance between omega-6 and omega-3 is considered to be a major contributory factor in the increasing rate of inflammatory conditions in the US; inflammation is linked to cardiovascular conditions, arthritis, cancer, and many other serious diseases.
A healthy Mediterranean diet, on the other hand, is more balanced, and the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 is within the required limits, which is perhaps why people following a Mediterranean diet are not as prone to inflammatory diseases and cardiovascular conditions. This is also true of cancer and depression, too. A typical Mediterranean diet is low on meat and high on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, olive oil, garlic, and above all, fish, which is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and provides the omega 3 depression benefits we are talking about.
With regard to depression, it has been noticed that people whose diets do not include healthy portions of omega-3 fatty acids or those who are not able to follow a balanced omega-6 to omega-3 ratio are at an increased risk of being depressed.
Omega-3 fatty acids are extremely essential ingredients of nerve cell membranes that are responsible for communicating with each other. For healthy functioning of the brain, it is important that these nerve cells are able to communicate well with each other. Thus, because omega-3 fatty acids increase the efficiency with which nerve cells communicate, they thus improve brain function and mental health. This helps to explain the presence of omega 3 depression benefits. The DHA variety of omega-3 fatty acid is the one which is most involved in nerve cell functioning.
Omega 3 depression studies have found that persons suffering from depression tend to have decreased levels of omega-3 fatty acids and / or inappropriate ratios of omega-6 and omega-3, where the omega-6 fatty acids are disproportionately high as compared to omega-3 fatty acids. Such research provides further evidence of omega 3 depression prevention and relief effects.
When placed on a regular and balanced diet containing good amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, persons suffering from depression have experienced relief from the clinical symptoms of the condition. This is true also for people suffering from bipolar disorder as well as schizophrenia and ADHD.
Below are related links with regard to clinical research studies and trials on omega-3 fatty acids and depression.
Learn more about the health benefits of omega 3 fatty acids at All-on-Omega-3.com.
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