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Brain Health Improved by Omega 3's

Monday, April 29, 2019

It's no secret that long-term diet and nutrition choices have an effect on the way we look and feel; but new studies show that nutrition can also affect the way we think. As it turns out, there really is such a thing as “food for thought.”

It may seem strange that what we put in our stomachs can have such a powerful effect on what goes on in our minds, but research is increasingly showing that emotional, mental and psychiatric disorders like depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia may more likely be the result of dietary deficiencies than genetic predispositions.

 The same is true of people who struggle with memory loss, have trouble learning new tasks, have Alzheimer’s disease or simply suffer from a lot of blue moods. The dietary deficiency that tends to frequently show up in these patients is a lack of omega-3 oils -- abundant fatty acids found in cold-water fish like salmon, herring and cod.

Omega-3s and brain health

The omega-3 fatty acid known as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an important ingredient for optimal brain function. Earl Mindell, RPh PhD, writes in Earl Mindell's Supplement Bible, “There's a reason why fish is known as brain food. It is a rich source of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a fatty acid that is found in high concentration in the gray matter of the brain. DHA is instrumental in the function of brain cell membranes, which are important for the transmission of brain signals.”

 By making cell membranes more fluid, omega-3 fatty acids, especially DHA, improve communication between the brain cells, according to Mind Boosters author Dr. Ray Sahelia. As a result, lack of omega-3 in the body can cause a communication breakdown in the brain, which is probably the last place you'd want such a breakdown to happen.

Omega-3 fatty acids are so important to the development and proper maintenance of the brain that “some scientists even postulate that it was the ingestion of omega-3 EFAs that allowed the brain to evolve to the next stage in human development,” according to Superfoods Rx authors Steven G. Pratt and Kathy Matthews. While omega-3s were abundant in our diets before the 20th century, they are now seriously lacking. 

The Editors of FC&A Medical Publishing write in The Folk Remedy Encyclopedia, “Just like a machine, your brain needs oil -- in the form of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids -- to run smoothly. Unfortunately, the average diet doesn't usually contain the right balance of these fatty acids. If you eat a typical modern diet, you probably get plenty of omega-6 through corn, soybean, and other oils in processed food. But omega-3 oils, which are just as important, are often missing.”

Pregnant women need omega-3s

It may not be surprising that most red-meat-loving Americans do not get a lot a fish in their diets, and therefore are not getting enough brain-boosting omega-3. Unfortunately, since DHA is crucial in fetal brain development, that lack of omega-3 could be putting us at a mental disadvantage before we are even born.

During pregnancy, omega-3 fatty acids are conveyed from the mother's blood to the developing fetus by way of the placenta,” writes Phyllis A. Balch in Prescription For Dietary Wellness. “They are vital for the development of the brain and retina membranes of the fetus.

 Thus, the amount of DHA the baby receives depends on the mother's dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids.” Depending on Mom’s diet, then, a child’s brain could be starved for omega-3 before it has any say in the matter, and research shows this could actually have a significant impact on intelligence and vision.

Several recent studies, conducted in both animals and humans, have shown that babies who receive adequate amounts of this vital fat have better functioning brains and higher IQs,” writes Dr. Russell L. Blaylock in Health And Nutrition Secrets. “Those with low amounts of DHA demonstrate learning difficulties and visual problems.” Therefore, moms who want to brag about their kids’ intelligence could stand to add more fish to their diets.

Omega-3 fatty acids continue to be essential to infant brain development after birth, and research shows babies who are breast fed receive higher levels of the important fatty acidthan those fed formula, since baby formula in the United States is not required to contain any omega-3 at all. 

Breast milk appears, in this case, to have major payoffs, according to Phyllis A. Balch, CNC and Dr. James F. Balch in Prescription For Nutritional Healing, who write, “Breastfed infants have been found to be more intelligent than formula-fed infants and to achieve higher academic levels in adult life.”

Omega-3s can aid mental and emotional disorders

The brain’s need for omega-3 fatty acids does not go away post-infancy. Omega-3 deficiencies in adults have been linked to various mental and emotional disorders. In fact, “some doctors even think the epidemic amounts of mental illness in modern societies can be traced back to the omega imbalance in the food supply,” according to Eat and Heal, by the Editors of FC&A Medical Publishing.

Low levels of DHA have been linked to memory loss, depression, bipolar disorder, attention deficit disorder, schizophrenia, autism and general learning difficulties or bad moods. “If you don't feed brain cell membranes enough of the right type of fat, the messages can be short-circuited and garbled. 

That may mean a disturbance in mood, concentration, memory, attention, and behavior,” writes Miracle Cures author Jean Carper. Depression in particular has been frequently linked to low levels of DHA, since omega-3 fatty acids help regulate mood by increasing levels of serotonin, the hormone that relieves depression.

Omega-3 may be just as important to the elderly population as it is to newborns, since diminishing omega-3 levels may be a contributing factor to stroke and Alzheimer’s disease. According to Eat and Heal, one of the possible causes of Alzheimer’s disease is beta-amyloid plaque, or clumps of protein, that accumulate in the victim's brain, and “experts believe beta-amyloid might be connected with inflammation of the brain's blood vessels.”

Since omega-3 fatty acids are known to reduce inflammation, they could also be an important key in the fight against this frightening degenerative disease, as has been suggested by research in Japan. “Japanese studies have shown that supplemental DHA sharpens memory in patients with dementia and depression and improves behavior and speech in those with Alzheimer's disease,” writes Dr. Julian Whitaker in The Memory Solution.

Omega-3 fatty acids aid in routine memory function in people without Alzheimer’s, as well. “One study found that DHA supplementation significantly decreased the number of reference memory errors and working memory errors in aged male rats and in young rats,” writes Gary Null in Power Aging.

For people who don’t like fish, omega-3 fatty acids are also available in some plant foods, like flaxseed and walnuts, but they are not as potent in these forms. Fish remains the best source of omega-3s, and diets lacking in the essential fatty acids may need supplements. “For optimal brain function, I recommend that you consume fish at least two or three times a week. If your diet does not include enough of the omega-3 fatty acids or enough fish, you could consider taking supplements of fish oils or flaxseed oil,” writes Dr. Sahelia.

So, if you are fish deficient, it’s time to wise up. After all, if eating more fish oil can help keep your brain sharp and help you hold on to those precious memories as you grow older, it seems like a smart choice to make.

The experts speak on omega-3 oils and brain health:

The belief that "fish is brain food" has been held around the world for well over two thousand years. Fish supplies omega-3 oils, and among them is docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), essential for brain and eye tissue development (specifically the retina) in infants; it remains fundamental to those tissues throughout life. 

Current research focuses on these oils—often woefully short, if not deficient, in modern diets—as one cause of attention deficit disorder. Once more, modern research is validating folk wisdom—fish really is brain food. Now, new findings are suggesting that the oils found in fish also help prevent cancer.

20 Natural Ways to Reduce The Risk Of Prostate Cancer by James Scala PHD, page 60

Many nutrients, such as the B vitamins, are critical to proper brain function. Fatty acid deprivation works against optimal brain power. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is a long-chain fatty acid found in fish, egg yolks, and marine algae, and is the predominant omega-3 fatty acid in brain tissue. 

As the brain is dependent on dietary fatty acids, reductions in DHA content of the diet may contribute to degenerative changes in the nervous system. The delicate balance of electrolytes also controls the electrical activity within the brain. For this reason, many of the tests previously mentioned relating to nutrition, toxic load, and stress have relevance when attempting to better understand sub-optimal brain function. 

Alternative Medicine by Burton Goldberg, page 1096

DHA remains the most important brain fat throughout life. Low levels of DHA are associated with an increased risk of memory loss. Dr. Michael A. Schmidt reports in Smart Fats that, according to data collected in the long-term Framingham Heart Study, adults with low levels of DHA have a greater likelihood of developing dementia in their later years. 

Other studies have indicated these adults are twice as likely to develop dementia as those with high levels of DHA. And a 1997 study demonstrated that low DHA blood levels are an important risk factor for Alzheimer's disease. 

The memory Solution by Dr Julian Whitaker, page 120

The implications of omega-3 deficiency on the brain are profound and span the entire human life cycle. Beginning in pregnancy, premature birth and its potential neurologic complications may result from omega-3 deficiency. Babies who are bottle-fed or born from omega-3-deficient mothers will lack the omega-3 fatty acids necessary for optimal cognitive and visual development.

 Children deprived of omega-3s may have less ability to pay attention and control impulsive behavior and may be at higher risk for depression. Teenagers and adults with omega-3 deficiency may be more prone to hostility or violence. 

In aging, the loss of omega-3 fatty acids in the brain may result in a higher risk of stroke, memory problems, or dementia. Individuals of any age without adequate amounts of omega-3 fatty acids in the brain and body may also be at higher risk for depression, bipolar disorder, and possibly other psychiatric disorders. 

The Omega3 Connection by Andrew L Stoll MD, page 40

Omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial because they provide fluidity to cell membranes and improve communication between brain cells. Omega-3s also reduce the clotting ability of platelets, thus potentially decreasing the incidence of heart attacks and strokes. Two very important omega-3 fatty acids are eicosapentanoic acid (EPA) and docosahexanoic acid (DHA). 

They are found in seafood, especially mackerel, salmon, striped bass, rainbow trout, halibut, tuna, and sardines. In the body, DHA is found mostly in the brain, retina, and in sperm. DHA plays an important role in vision. B) Omega-6 fatty acids are made from linoleic acid, a fatty acid found in vegetable oils such as corn, safflower, cottonseed, and sunflower. 

Mayonnaise and salad oils normally contain a great amount of omega-6 fatty acids. Unlike omega-3s, which are concentrated in the brain, omega-6s are found in most tissues in the body. The double bond of an omega-6 fatty acid starts six carbons from the left. Most Americans generally have a much higher intake of the omega-6s than the omega-3s. 

Mind Boosters by Dr Ray Sahelia MD, page 69

One of the most important of these fats is called docosohexiaonic acid or DHA. This fat plays an important role in the formation of the synaptic connections within the brain. These connections allow the various parts of the brain to communicate with each other and communicate with the body as well. 

Health And Nutrition Secrets by Russell L Blaylock MD, page 34

Adequate levels of DHA are required for proper brain and eye development and function. DHA is important for signal transmission in the brain, eye, and nervous system. 

Heart Disease by Burton Goldberg, page 46

Essential fatty acids are important in both stroke prevention and during the repair of brain tissue damaged by stroke. The brain is almost entirely composed of fatty acids. The Framingham study confirmed that the friendly fats have a beneficial effect on stroke prevention. Essential fatty acids include alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) found in perilla and flaxseed oils and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) found in cold-water fish oil. 

Fish oils reduce inflammation due to their high content of DHA and EPA. Fish oil acts as platelet aggregation inhibitors as well as triglyceride lowering agents.

Disease Prevention And Treatment by Life Extension Foundation, page 533

DHA is not only very critical in brain development but also in maintenance of the brain later in life. Don't forget, the brain is constantly restructured throughout life, even into the extremes of age. Unfortunately, because of food-processing methods and industrial raising of animals as meat sources, most omega-3 fatty acids have been removed from our foods. 

Health And Nutrition Secrets by Russell L Blaylock MD, page 315

Fish oil is probably the most important dietary source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are vital nutrients. These fatty acids reduce inflammation, protect against the abnormal clotting associated with heart attacks, inhibit cancer, and protect brain function. 

There may be other benefits, too: a 1992 study published in the journal Lancet, for example, suggested that omega-3 fatty acids prolong pregnancy by a few days and improve birth weights. 

Ask Dr Weil by Andrew Weil MD, page 92

The basic building blocks of our brain cells are essential fatty acids such as EPA and DHA from fish oil. These fatty acids are also used as fuel for brain metabolism and help control the chronic inflammatory processes involved in degenerative brain disorders. 

Disease Prevention And Treatment by Life Extension Foundation, page 22

In the last month of pregnancy and first month of neonatal life, omega-3 fatty acids are rapidly incorporated into the brain of the baby. Be sure to include extra amounts of salmon, sardines, or flax into your diet during this period. 

8 Weeks To Optimum Health by Andrew Weil MD, page 217

DHA is found in foods that many people have given up in the name of good health, such as organ meats and eggs. It is also abundant in fatty fish, like salmon, mackerel, sardines, and albacore tuna; however, most Americans do not eat significant quantities of fish. 

DHA is found in high concentration in the gray matter of the brain and the retina of the eye. It is also instrumental in the function of brain cell membranes, which are important for the transmission of brain signals. 

Earl Mindell's Supplement Bible by Earl Mindell RPh PhD, page 44

A major building block of human brain tissue and the primary structural fatty acid in the gray matter of the brain and the retina, DHA is vital for brain and eye health. Studies indicate that DHA may have cardiovascular benefits as well as neurological benefits. Although the body can convert alpha-linolenic acid into DHA, the amount produced is minimal so you are better off getting DHA directly from food. 

Fight Back With Food by Readers Digest, page 73

EPA and DHA are important fatty acids in maintaining proper memory and cognitive function. Therefore, I consider fish oils to be a crucial component of the mind-boosting program presented in this book. Taking a small amount of antioxidants, such as a few units of vitamin E, along with the fish-oil supplements seems prudent. 

Mind Boosters by Dr Ray Sahelia MD, page 77

Studies strongly suggest that DHA, the fatty acid found in fish, is essential for normal mental function. These fatty acids may have many jobs in the body, including a possible role in the production of neurotransmitters. In fact, research has shown that primates fed a diet low in this particular fat actually became more violent and aggressive. The same may be true for humans. 

Earl Mindells Secret Remedies by Earl Mindell RPh PhD, page 110

Eat plenty of cold-water fish such as tuna, trout, mackerel, and salmon, Dr. Khalsa suggests. They're rich in omega-3 fatty acids, nutrients that help protect brain cells. 

Alternative Cures by Bill Gottlieb, page 21

Boomer Omega-3

Heart Health: Supplementing with Omega-3 can lower the risk heart attack and stroke. American medical researchers reported that people who consumed omega-3 regularly had a 50 percent lower risk of a sudden cardiac event than do people who do not consume omega-3 on a regular basis.

Cholesterol Health: Omega-3 can reduce the enzyme activity that causes the liver to metabolize fat, reducing liver triglycerides significantly.

Brain Health: EPA and DHA keep the dopamine levels in your brain high, increase neuronal growth in the frontal cortex of your brain, and increase cerebral circulation. Research has shown fish oils help reduce depression, mental fatigue, anxiety, and stress.

Keto Diet Support: Boomer Omega 3's a re a High Quality source of Healthy Fats that the Keto Diet requires to burn for Energy.

For more information or to get your supply click on the image below


Taken from an article titled" Brain health dramaticall improved by intake of omega-3 fatty acids and fish oils by Alexis Black

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