Omega supplements are something you’ve probably heard of, passed on the shelves on Walgreens on your way to get a Arizona Green Tea (something I do regularly), or maybe you’ve never heard of them. Omega is a chain of fatty acids that are consumed through oils. When you think of Omega you probably think of Fish Oil. If you don’t like fish then this is for you because the supplements might be more bearable in taste. But before we get into the best supplements, you should know what it is exactly Omega fats do for your body.
The Omega Fatty acids are generally composed of these two key ingredients. DHA (docosahexaenoic) which is the main player in the benefits associated with Omega supplements. As well as EPA (eicosapentaenoic) which is the secondary, yet essential, contributor in the benefits.
Omega benefits generally revolve around the blood, heart, and artery health. In a study of over 700,000 patients (the most comprehensive study to date of omega oils) Mayo Clinic came out with some results showing a correlation between index (amount) of omega 3’s in the blood and risk of CHD (Coronary Heart Disease). Check out this chart of their findings!
Omega 3’s Reduction in Triglycerides
Omega 3’s are also proven to reduce Triglycerides (fat in your blood) that can clot your arteries. This is a major single risk factor for CHD, but while Niacin does effectively lower triglycerides, it doesn’t necessarily reduce risk of CHD. Omega Fish Oil’s on the other hand lower TG (triglycerides) more effectively, AND lower risk of CHD overall. Omega fatty acids are also not as conflicting with other medications you may be taking and show less side effects than other alternatives.
Heart Attack and Stroke
Triglycerides are the fats in your blood that are usually deposited somewhere within your body. However, in excess, they can linger in your blood for an extended period of time. Slowly overtime if they clump together and get stuck they can raise blood pressure by narrowing the blood passages where blood flows. Eventually this could become a clogged artery, causing a heart attack or stroke. Omega 3’s like the chart above reduce the amount of triglycerides in the blood. So with the reduction in TG, comes a reduction in clogged arteries, which leads to a reduction in heart attacks and stroke. Those two being major causes of sudden death, it would also decrease the chance of that as well.
Improving the flow of your blood by reducing the amount of TG in your blood improves the whole system. One place where you could find this is in the Rhythm of you heart itself. Having narrowed passage ways, or higher pressure on your heart it puts a strain on the heart muscles, making it more difficult to beat properly, causing it to palpitate. Omega’s reducing TG in the blood reduces the risk of this and ultimately improves heart rhythm by taking the constant strain off the heart.
Some Omega 6’s can be found in vegetable oils. Omega 6 is not required in the levels that Omega 3 is. Taken in moderation they are shown to be beneficial to the heart much like Omega 3’s are. Because the body cannot produce Omega 6 on it’s own, it needs to come from the diet. However, most Americans already get enough through what they are eating already. According to Healthline, you should get about 5-10% of your calories from Omega 6’s about (22g based on a 2000 calorie diet). However when taken in excess it shows to increase chances of CHD and other heart complications. Be cautious, but also make sure you getting some.
Omega 9 is another piece of the chain that is the Omega fatty acid. Omega 9, while required for some bodily functions, is not strictly essential because of the fact that the body can produce it’s own whenever it needs it. By and large, you don’t need it in a supplement. However, if you were to replace unhealthy saturated fats in your diet with foods high in Omega 9 like Olive Oil, avocado oil, almond oil, it would be beneficial due to not consuming those unhealthy fats.
Vegan Alternatives to Omega Supplements
If you’re vegan and cannot eat fish or fish oil, then you’ll be happy to know that you can also get Omega 3’s from other food sources. The most potent being Flax seeds, Algae, seaweed, and many more.
Omega Supplements for Pregnancy
When you’re pregnant, you probably know that a human is being manufactured inside you (If you didn’t know that there’s a problem). And just like manufacturing anything, if you don’t have the raw material required it won’t happen, or will happen poorly. Omegas are essential for brain and retina growth because DHA makes up a large portion of the material used. Not to say that you baby will cease to exist, but it will be more efficient if you have more than enough Omegas to go around. For something as serious as pregnancy though, consult your doctor to make sure it’s something you need.
Best Time to Take Omega Supplements
There is no real best time to take them. You could take them whenever. However, there have been some evidence to show that there may be better absorption when taken after a meal with dietary fats.
Omega’s and Brain and Vision Health
Because the brain is approximately 40% made up of DHA and EPA, and the retinas are made up of about 60%, it is believed that they could have a large impact on your brain and eye functions. However there has not been sufficient evidence to suggest this.[wptb id=3255] [wptb id=3252] [wptb id=3253]
Best Omega Supplements 2022![wptb id=3258] [wptb id=3256] [wptb id=3263] [wptb id=3260]
In conclusion, Omega fatty acids are essential for bodily functions, and cardiovascular health. Choosing the right one can be difficult because they all pretty much look the same, but with these tips and guides hopefully you can be closer to picking the Omega Supplement that’s meant for you! Have a great day!