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Specific Benefits Of Fish Oil

If you've been up to date on nutrition, you must have heard about the benefits of fish oil and omega-3 fatty acids. But wait - you've also heard the good idea to reduce your fat intake. So why should you supplement your diet with omega-3 fatty acids?

The answer is that not all fats are the same. There are even types, usually grouped into three broad categories: trans fats, saturated fats and unsaturated fats.

Foods that contain trans fats (cakes, cakes and fries, to name a few) not only increase LDL, or "bad" cholesterol but also "good" HDL cholesterol. These foods should be eaten in moderation. As well as foods with saturated fat, such as butter, pizza, ice cream and red meat, which also increase bad cholesterol levels.

Foods that raise good cholesterol include olive oil, vegetables, nuts and seafood, cold seafood, especially salmon. They all contain unsaturated fats, most of them polyunsaturated.

Fish oil - consisting of two polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids, DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) - can provide some health benefits, and not just for adults in general. This can be beneficial to pregnant or breastfeeding women, to children and adults with heart problems or to show signs of Alzheimer's disease.

Studies have shown the benefits of fish oil taken during pregnancy in both pregnant and developing children. DHA is a key building block in the development of the fetal brain and eyes, while the EPA helps regulate the length of pregnancy.

During growth and development that occur after infants and children, fish oil can be essential for proper eye and nerve development. Studies involving five-year-olds show a definite relationship between mothers taking omega-3 supplements during breastfeeding and the level of skill focused on their children.

Perhaps more interesting is that fish oil plays a role in reducing heart attacks, even among individuals who have experienced one. A study in Italy of more than 11,000 coronary-healthy men found that adding omega-3s to their diet reduced not only their overall risk for heart attacks and stroke but also their mortality.

The decline and loss of brain cells due to Alzheimer's disease is also believed by some researchers to be offset by a high dietary diet of omega-3s. Although commonly associated with older people, Alzheimer's symptoms can begin several decades earlier. Our brains, which reach full size by the age of 20, began to shrink shortly and were on average reduced by 11 percent by age 45. Critical Alzheimer's studies show that a diet rich in fish oil may slow down without stopping this contraction.

And for those of us who already enjoy good health, fish oil offers other benefits. The EPA that contains it helps the skin maintain a smooth, youthful appearance with fewer wrinkles and less acne.


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