Essential Fatty Acids
Essential Fatty Acids are nutritional cornerstones of human health. Two major families of fats are comprised under this designation, omegas 3 and 6. They are deemed 'essential' because we need them for proper health—much like certain vitamins and minerals—but cannot produce them on our own. We must therefore consume these fats through diet or supplementation.
Most people associate omega-3s with cardiovascular health, but their benefits go far beyond the heart. The two main omega-3s eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) support healthy inflammatory levels, which are behind the relief of many chronic conditions but that are too often inhibited by poor nutrition.* Extensive research has documented the health benefits of EPA and DHA which include not only a healthy heart, but brain and cognitive function, joint mobility, eye health, pregnancy and lactation, healthy skin and hair, and a normally functioning immune response.*
Despite the great health benefits of omegas, individuals around the world suffer from omega–3 deficiency, a little–known problem to most people, but one that is counted as the 8th leading cause of preventable death in the US, among dietary, lifestyle, and metabolic risk factors.1 Omega–3 deficiency stems in large part from the growing unavailability of foods rich these nutrients—principally fish—and because of the increasing popularity of the Western diet worldwide. While most diets prior to the 20th century contained a relative balance of omega–3 and omega–6 rich foods, the typical Western diet today contains far more of the pro–inflammatory omega–6s. In fact, Americans have the lowest intake of omega-3 essential fatty acids of any developed country—the typical American diet contains 14–25 times more omega–6s than omega–3s! Through science and education, Nordic Naturals is committed to delivering both increased awareness and quality omega nutrition in order to address this global health concern.
1Danaei G, et al. The Preventable Causes of Death in the United States: Comparative Risk Assessment of Dietary, Lifestyle, and Metabolic Risk Factors. PLoS Med 2009;6(4)
2Raffaele De Caterina, n-3 Fatty Acids in Cardiovascular Disease, New England Journal of Medicine 2011; 364: 2439–50