Monday, July 26, 2010

The benefits of Omega 3 Fatty Acids are seen not only in Cystic Fibrosis

So for the past couple weeks, I have been determined to find out why everyone is talking about "OMEGAS" and what kind of benefits it can give to my boys and maybe also to me and my body pains.

So, we have omega 3, omega 6 and omega 9.

Omega 3's contain Alpha Linoleic Acid (ALA) which gets metabolized into Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA.) EPA and DHA are what all the hype is about! These Essential Fatty Acids are what suppress inflammation, prevent coronary disease, support development of the brain and many other things. Many of the issues people with Cystic Fibrosis deal with are inflammation, so anything I can find, in the realm of a natural remedy to decrease it, I am game.

There are many articles siting a great improvement in children with ADD, while taking Omega 3's. Here is one.

Here is a study involving CF and Omega-3 fatty acids

Shark Tank, which works on research for Cystic fibrosis, gives the recommended dosage of DHA, stating that DHA is likely to be deficient in persons with Cystic Fibrosis.

As for the dosage for other problems, you will have to do your own research. When you are looking for a supplement, make sure that it states that it has been purified by molecular distillation. This ensures that any mercury and other toxins have been removed. Also you will want to look at the contents and make sure that it contains EPA and DHA (not just ALA, as it is quite difficult for the body to metabolize it). The bottle may say 1000 mg Fish Oil, but only contain 100 mg of DHA and EPA. The dosage you are looking for is the amount of DHA and EPA that is available. Some places you can find Omega 3's would be in wild caught salmon, walnuts and flax seed.
Talk with a doctor before supplementing with Omega 3, as it can thin the blood and may interfere with some medications.

Omega 6 and 9 are basically abundant in our diet and thus we have no need to supplement them. Omega 6 is found in soybean oil, sunflower oil, canola oil and corn oil. The average American consumes 10 to 30 times more omega 6 than omega 3. This ratio is what triggers inflammation, cardiovascular disease, cancer and many other conditions. The ideal ratio would be 2 to 4 times more omega 6 than omega 3. Omega 9 is found in animal fat and olive oil (don't worry, olive oil does have some very good attributes, maybe we will talk about them later:)

So my we are starting an Omega 3 supplement, I have found one that looks great, but I am not all that thrilled about advertising, so message me if you want to know what I found:) I now know that I made a good choice of not using canola oil and will be making efforts to decrease the amount of corn products we eat.



  1. When you have a moment, check

    Some great information on omega 3s

  2. We've used a fish oil supp here for quite some time as well. :) I believe they are very beneficial for a broad variety of reasons, and now that my daughter has cf, even more so.

    In addition to mercury-free, I make sure I buy one that has an enteric coating (also sometimes labeled as 'odor free'.) The kids are so much more cooperative about taking them this way!

    I have found in the several common drugstore brand/dept store brand products I have purchased over the last 5yrs, a typical 1000mg omega3 supp contains about 300mg dha/epa so am sure to base our dose on that.

    I hope it works well for your family. :)

  3. Hey Missa ... this is Tricia Messmer. Wasn't sure how else to post, but wanted to mention that I've taken Barlean's for years and they have a new line called Barlean's Total Omega Swirl. I looked and it has 300 mg each of DHA and EPA. Wasn't sure if this is high enough as you had mentioned a low number of 100. It is a liquid form, but is super yum. My son prefers it to his Nordic Naturals and always wants some of mine. It is more expensive, however, and I'm trying to find a new distributor as ours went out of biz. Thanks for your blogging!!!!! Such a blessing to know you value nutrition for your cf punkins!

  4. Hey Tricia,
    the boys take a 400mg of EPA and 200mg of DHA each day. But once we run out of our current supply, I will be also looking into liquid form. I will check out the brand you mentioned! 300mg of DHA is awesome...that is what Shark Tank recommends for our younger kids!!!