An Overview of Omega Fatty Acids: What Are Omega 3, 6, 7 and 9?
Ever wonder what’s really in those pricey supplements lining the shelves of your local health food store? You’ve probably heard a lot about the benefits of omega fatty acids recently. An Omega 3, 6, 7, and 9 supplement seems to be all the rage. Before you drop major cash on the latest miracle pill, let’s dive into what these supplements actually are and see if the hype matches the science. Turns out, some of these fatty acids do have real health benefits when consumed in the right amounts and ratios. But others are more marketing gimmick than scientific wonder. We’ll break down the differences and help you determine which, if any, omega supplements are right for you based on the latest research. By the end of this article, you’ll be able to spot the snake oil salesmen and know which products are really worth your hard-earned money. The secret healing powers of fatty acids await!
The Health Benefits of Omega Fatty Acid Supplements
Omega fatty acids are essential fats that our body needs for various functions but cannot produce on its own. We have to get them through diet or supplements. The most well-known are omega-3, omega-6, omega-7 and omega-9 fatty acids.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory and important for heart, brain, and eye health. The main types are EPA and DHA, found in fatty fish like salmon, and ALA from plant sources such as flaxseeds and chia seeds. Fish oil supplements are a popular way to get EPA and DHA.
Omega-6 Fatty Acids
Omega-6s are also essential but pro-inflammatory in excess amounts. They’re found in nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils. A proper balance of omega-3s and 6s is key. Most diets provide more than enough omega-6s so focus on upping your omega-3 intake.
Omega-7 Fatty Acid
Omega-7 palmitoleic acid is found in cold-water fish and macadamia nuts. It may help reduce heart disease risk factors and inflammation. Sea buckthorn oil is a supplement high in omega-7s.
Omega-9 Fatty Acids
Omega-9 oleic acid is a non-essential fat found in olive oil, avocados, and almonds. Although not essential, it has heart health and anti-inflammatory benefits. No supplements needed as it’s easy to get enough from diet alone.
In summary, aim for a good balance of these healthy fats. Up your omega-3s, don’t overdo omega-6s, and you’ll be well on your way to better health and longevity. Add more fatty fish, nuts, seeds, and their oils to your diet and you’ve got this covered naturally!
Choosing the Right Omega Fatty Acid Supplement for You
Omega fatty acids are essential for your health, which is why omega supplements have become so popular. The three main types—omega 3, 6, and 9—each provide different benefits.
Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory and help support brain and heart health. The two key omega-3s are EPA and DHA, found in fish oil and algal oil supplements. Taking an omega-3 supplement with at least 600 mg of EPA and DHA per day can help reduce the risk of heart disease and may even boost your mood.
The Benefits of Omega-6
Omega-6 fatty acids are also important for health, even though they’re often vilified. Omega-6s help stimulate hair growth, maintain bone health, regulate metabolism, and support the reproductive system. The main omega-6 is linoleic acid (LA), found in plant oils like sunflower or safflower oil. Most experts recommend aiming for a 1:1 or 2:1 ratio of omega-3s to omega-6s in your diet.
Omega-9s, like oleic acid, are non-essential but have benefits too. They help support immune function, healthy cholesterol levels, and skin health. Omega-9s are found in olive oil, macadamia nut oil, and avocados.
By supplementing with a blend of omega 3, 6, and 9, you’ll gain the benefits of all three essential fatty acids. The typical dosage for a blended supplement is 1,000 to 3,000 mg per day. So add an omega complex to your daily routine and you’ll be supporting whole-body health and longevity. Your mind and body will thank you.