The benefits of Omega-3 for your brain

The benefits of Omega-3 for your brain

23 Feb 2022

How to stay sharp and brainy with Omega-3, you ask? Here’s what the experts have to say…

The body is able to do so many things and execute various functions at the same time. The sole organ that ensures all this is possible is none other than the brain - the command center, the base of all operations. It performs complex functions, such as thought, recall, movement, and emotion (6).

The brain is considered healthy if it can perform all the necessary mental processes for cognition. This includes the ability to learn, make decisions, use language, as well as make and access memories (4).

As such, it is important to keep it healthy. One way of doing this is by taking omega-3 for the brain.

Omega 3 for brain

What is Veg Omega?

Veg Omega is a vegan-friendly omega-3 supplement that has naturally sourced omega-3 essential fatty acids. They are ‘essential’ as they are vital in nurturing the brain and its many processes.

What are Omega-3 Fatty Acids?

Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated acids found either in fish and other seafood or plant-based sources (1). ‘Polyunsaturated’ refers to molecules with numerous double or triple bonds and are considered healthier than saturated fats (2).

There are three types of omega-3 for the brain: EPA, DHA, and ALA. EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) is found in fatty fish like salmon, tuna and trout; DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is found in shellfish like crabs, mussels and oysters; while ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) is obtained from vegetable oils (among other plant sources) like canola and soy (1).

How Is Veg Omega Different?

The essential fatty acids - like the plant-based ALA (11) - cannot be produced by the body, so it must be taken from other sources. However, those leading vegetarian or vegan lifestyles may find it difficult to find abundant sources of DHA and EPA, which are both animal-derived. Each Veg Omega capsule contains omega-3 triglycerides from algal oil as well as DHA and EPA. It is also gluten- and lactose-free, as well as non-GMO (9).

Why Is It Important?

Omega 3 for brain

These sources of omega-3 for the brain are fats necessary to form neurons (3). The brain is lipid-rich, meaning it is made up of different types of fat, each of which serves a specific role in the structure and function of cell membranes (10).

Another study shows us that DHA, among other nutrients, is key in the central nervous system’s development. Particularly in foetuses and newborn babies, omega-3 for the brain is received through the diet from the mother while inside the womb and during breastfeeding. These essential fatty acids aid mental development in children as they grow (7).

Inversely, in older people, it has been found that low levels of DHA in red blood cells was linked to smaller brain volumes in marked cognitive decline (8).

These studies indicate that omega-3 fatty acids maintain brain function and support brain health. Research states that Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are essential to proper brain structure, function and overall health. As Omega-3’s cannot be synthesized by the body, they need to be included in the human diet, particularly from seafood and plant sources. Veg omega from Vitable packs can help to maintain brain function, cardiovascular system health and eye health. This is most convenient for those with vegan or vegetarian lifestyles as well as others.

A healthy and balanced diet is crucial to ensure that you’re having adequate amounts of omega 3 fatty acids. You might also want to consider Vitable Vitamins. Our vitamins subscription allows you to create your daily vitamins pack based on your needs and preferences.  Our service also includes vitamin delivery in Australia to ensure you’ll receive your custom vitamin packs right at your doorstep!

*Always read the label. Follow the directions for use. If symptoms persist, talk to your health professional. Vitamin and/or mineral supplements should not replace a balanced diet.

References:

  1. “7 Things To Know About Omega-3 Fatty Acids”. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Published 15 Dec 2021 on https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/tips/things-to-know-about-omega-fatty-acids. Accessed on 14 Dec 2021.
  2. “Polyunsaturated.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/polyunsaturated. Accessed 14 Dec. 2021.
  3. “Omega-3 fats - Good for your heart”. MedlinePlus. Published 30 Nov 2021 on https://medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000767.htm. Accessed on 14 Dec 2021.
  4. “Fact sheet: What is a Healthy Brain? New Research Explores Perceptions of Cognitive Health Among Diverse Older Adults”. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  https://www.cdc.gov/aging/pdf/perceptions_of_cog_hlth_factsheet.pdf. Accessed 14 Dec 2021.
  5. Innis, SM. “Dietary omega 3 fatty acids and the developing brain”. Brain Research. Published 9 Sep 2008 on 10.1016/j.brainres.2008.08.078. Accessed 14 Dec 2021.
  6. Wang, Y, Pan, Y, Li, H. “What is brain health and why is it important?”. British Medical Journal. Published 9 Oct 2020 on  https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m3683. Accessed 14 Dec 2021.
  7. Helland, IB, Smith, L, Saarem, K, Saugstad, OD, Drevon CA. “Maternal supplementation with very-long-chain n-3 fatty acids during pregnancy and lactation augments children’s IQ at 4 years of age”. Pediatrics. Published Jan 2003 on 10.1542/peds.111.1.e39. Accessed 15 Dec 2021.
  8. Tan, ZS, et. al. “Red blood cell omega-3 fatty acid levels and markers of accelerated brain aging”. Neurology. Published 28 Feb 2012 on  10.1212/WNL.0b013e318249f6a9. Accessed 15 Dec 2021.
  9. “Veg Omega”. Vitable. https://www.vitable.com.au/products/veg-omega. Accessed 14 Dec 2021.
  10. Sinclair, AJ, Begg, D, Mathai M, Weisinger, RS. “Omega 3 fatty acids and the brain: review of studies in depression”. Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Published 2007 on https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17392137/. Accessed 15 Dec 2021.
  11. “Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Plant-Based Diets”. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. https://www.pcrm.org/good-nutrition/nutrition-information/omega-3. Accessed 15 Dec 2021.