On Inflammation and Supercharging the Anti-inflammatory Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Fish Oil

Fish oil is one of the most popular nutritional supplements people take, and one of my personal favorites for its natural anti-inflammatory benefits.

Inflammation, as we now know, is a root cause of so many health conditions, acute and chronic, which are skyrocketing today.

What does inflammation do?

Inflammation makes us hurt, drains our energy, fogs our brain, and even contributes to depression.

How do we fight back?

Eating fish, in particular cold water fish, is delicious, healthy, and a great way to get anti-inflammatory Omega-3 fatty acids into your diet.

We should strive to eat it consistently. Unfortunately, diet is often not enough to obtain the anti-inflammatory effects we are seeking for arthritis, muscle aches, reducing asthma symptoms, improving brain clarity, and to just simply feel better.

Furthermore, we find that most people are already in a long-standing deficit of Omega-3s that would take an exceedingly long time to correct with diet alone.

My advice?  Don't give up on it… Enhance it!

Here are a couple of ways to harness the real power of Omega-3s with simple, smart nutrition strategies.

Firstly, continue eating cold water fish consistently in your diet. This provides a base of omega-3 fatty acids for your body. If you choose salmon consistently, you get an amazing antioxidant known as astaxanthin, which is responsible for the pink color in the fish. Studies on astaxanthin appear to show that it inhibits many enzymes involved in skin aging and wrinkles- which you have to love!

Secondly, Choose a high potency pure omega-3 supplement that provides generous levels of EPA and DHA.

EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) is an anti-inflammatory rockstar! DHA (docosapentaenoic acid) is a primary nourishment for the brain and cells of the nervous system.

Not all  supplements are created equally!

It is essential to get a properly manufactured product. Ensure that your fish oil is molecularly distilled!

This process removes the harmful contaminants like mercury and other toxins such as PCBs, found in fish these days which are so detrimental to our health. 

Supplementing with the wrong product can essentially do more harm than not taking one at all!

Thirdly, And most important to supercharging your Omega-3s...Change the sources of fats in your diet.

Dietary fats, especially those in the Standard American Diet (a.k.a. SAD) actually work to promote inflammation and dramatically inhibit the anti-inflammatory effects of the Omega-3 fatty acids you do get.

Most fats in the current American diet supply high amounts of the active pro-inflammatory fat Arachidonic Acid (AA).  Animal fats like butter, milk, cheese and red meat are loaded with Arachidonic Acid. This is complicated by the fact that many cooking oils we use are high in the Omega-6 fatty acid -Linoleic Acid. The body uses Linoleic acid to then MAKE Arachidonic Acid!

Corn, sunflower, sesame, soy bean, peanut, and cottonseed oils contain significant amounts of Omega-6.

Easy rule: stick to olive oil!  By reducing or eliminating the harmful fats, it profoundly limits inflammatory fuel the body uses to propagate inflammation.

And here's the kicker that supercharges your Omega-3s-when you reduce/eliminate the inflammatory dietary fats (Arachidonic Acid/Omega-6s) and increase Omega-3s (EPA), you change each cell of your body on a molecular level overtime- thereby short-circuiting inflammation production! 

This occurs not only at the root cellular level but even more deeply on a genetic level. Overtime what do you get? Less aches and pains, sharper mental clarity, improved mobility as well as enhanced energy and vitality.

Overall you just feel better!

Robert Grinstead, PA-C, MPH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author
Robert Grinstead, PA-C, MPH Robert holds a Master's Degree in Public Health and Nutrition from Tulane School of Public Health and aBachelor of Science in Physician's Assistant Studies from Long Island University. Robert studied under Dr. James P. Carter, a pioneer in Complementary Medicine. Robert continues to share his brilliance and knowledge with his patients and colleagues.

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