Nordic Naturals ProEPA Xtra 60 Softgels
Can we get enough Omega-3s from the food we eat?
Fish is the primary food source of the omega-3s EPA and DHA, but Americans simply don't eat enough fish on a regular basis. Even those who eat fish several times a week aren't getting enough EPA and DHA because much of the fish consumed today is farm raised and lacks significant amounts of EPA and DHA. Also, many people are increasingly avoiding fish due to growing concerns about environmental toxins in fish (such as mercury, dioxins, PCBs, etc.). In addition, there are several factors that can lead to a reduced absorption of EFAs-age, poor diet, alcohol consumption, low levels of certain vitamins and minerals, some prescription drugs, compromised immune status, and a diet high in saturated and/or trans-fatty acids (meat, dairy, fast food, fried food, baked goods, and processed foods). Moreover, people with health challenges or those who are currently deficient often require a minimum of 2-4 grams a day of EPA and DHA, which is difficult to obtain from fish alone.
What is the relevance of balancing the omega-6 Omega-3 Ratio?
Over the past 100 years, changes in the food supply in Western nations have altered the type of dietary fatty acids we consume, leading to a dramatic increase in the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids. This increased omega- 6:omega-3 ratio is known to influence inflammatory responses, contributing to higher incidences of many chronic diseases. To address this omega-6:omega-3 imbalance, current recommendations suggest increasing the consumption of pre-formed omega-3s EPA and DHA in fish and/or fish oils, increasing intake of ALA (an omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid found in vegetables, flax, fruits) and decreasing intake of LA (the omega-6 linoleic acid in meat, dairy, eggs, vegetable oils).
If we get too much Omega-6 in our diet, then why does nordic naturals offer products that contain an omega-6 (e.g Complete Omega-3,6,9, Omega Woman)?
Omega-6 fatty acids (LA or Linoleic Acid) are found mainly in corn, soybean, safflower, and sunflower oils and, although essential, these fatty acids are over consumed and out of balance with omega-3 fatty acids in the modern Western food supply. For these reasons, omega-6 supplementation is not needed for non-strict-vegan westerners. However, there is one type of omega-6 (named GLA or Gamma Linolenic Acid) that does require supplementation. GLA is found in few sources such as borage and evening primrose oils. Used in some Nordic Naturals formulas, GLA promotes the production of beneficial prostaglandins, supports healthy skin, brain function, mood, joints and cardiovascular health, and works best when taken along with the EPA and DHA in fish oil.