Do you lie about your age? It’s okay, we won’t tell. Most of us make attempts to stay young: we hide our wrinkles or deny having bouts of forgetfulness. However, despite our efforts to ignore aging, it happens everyday. In our brains, aging results in a slow loss of cognitive function, affecting both memory and focus. Luckily there is no need to call Sherlock Holmes to help solve this mystery. The answer is easy to find and tasty too! Omega-3s, those essential fatty acids we’ve been reading about for heart and joint health, also helps support cognitive health and brain function. In a 2016 article in Current Neuropharmacology, experts concluded that omega-3s are essential to successful aging and are ideal cognitive enhancers. Ah-ha! Brilliant! Omega-3s are great for our brains.
Other recent scientific studies suggest links may exist between healthy levels of omega-3s in the brain and our mood, anxiety levels and post-traumatic stress disorder. As researchers are learning more about the role of omega-3s in the brain it becomes clearer that getting enough in our diets is important to our health. Are you getting enough?
Put on your thinking caps! Some seeds, such as flax and chia, offer a form of omega-3 fatty acids that your body can partially convert to EPA and DHA. The best source of dietary omega-3 fatty acids is fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel and sardines, which are direct sources of EPA and DHA. Health Canada suggests we consume 100 to 5000mg of EPA+DHA daily for cognitive health. That’s a lot of fish – about 3 servings of salmon per day. Salmon is delicious, but that’s a lot of salmon to eat!
An easy way to get more EPA and DHA into your diet is with a quality fish oil supplement. Health First Omega-First gel capsules contain 450mg EPA and 250mg DHA for a total of 700mg of EPA+DHA per capsule and Health First Omega-First Liquid contains 760mg EPA 505mg DHA for a total of 1265mg of EPA+DHA in one 5ml teaspoon.
Hold on a minute! Before you stick your tongue out and say, “Yuck!” know that good quality fish oil shouldn’t taste fishy. Health First Omega-First high potency fish oil has no fishy after-taste! It has a delicious lemon flavour. Oh, aren’t we so witty – we solved the mystery with some yummy food for thought.
A Bit of Brain Food
Here are a few omega-3 facts for your brain to chew on:
• The two most important omega-3s for your brain are EPA and DHA.
• Omega-3s are one type of essential fatty acid (EFA).
• The body cannot make omega-3s hence they are called essential.
• Signs of deficiency include fatigue, memory loss, dry skin and depression.
Want to learn more about choosing a fish oil that is right for you? Read more about the Canadian independent testing service will tell you how safe, potent and fresh your fish oil is: http://healthfirstnetwork.ca/blog/does-your-fish-oil-pass-the-test/