The word "fat" is not usually associated with positive things. It's something we typically want to avoid, looking for foods labeled "low fat" or even "fat free" when we shop or dine out. However, there are some "good fats" you should actually want in your diet: Essential fatty acids (EFAs).
The two types of EFAs are omega-3s like alpha linoleic acid (ALA) and omega-6s like gamma-linoleic acid (GLA). These are different from other fatty acids, like omega-9, because the body can't produce them, which is why they're marked essential. You can find EFAs in foods like fish, nuts, avocados and olive oil as well as supplements.
Here are 10 reasons to kick the bad fats and start getting more of the good:
1. Lower Cholesterol -- Keeping "bad" (LDL) cholesterol levels low and "good" (HDL) cholesterol levels high helps reduce your risk for developing heart disease or other cardiovascular issues. EFAs can help bring down triglycerides (the bad stuff) to keep your heart protected.
2.Reduce High Blood Pressure -- Another benefit for the heart, consuming EFAs can help bring blood pressure back into the desired range and prevent strain and damage on the arteries that can lead to heart attack and stroke.
3. Support Cognitive Function -- A high amount of omega-3 fatty acids in the brain supports proper development early in life and later safeguards the brain against cognitive decline. Omega-3s can be beneficial in preventing or slowing the effects of degenerative conditions like Alzheimer's disease and improve other mental health issues like attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and depression.
4. Protect Bones -- EFAs help the bones of children develop properly so they grow at a normal rate through adolescence. As mature adults, these fatty acids protect the bones from losing mass which can lead to fractures, breaks and osteoporosis.
5. Support Lean Muscles -- If you're an athlete or anyone who trains regularly, EFAs can prevent and ease the pain of muscle strain from exercise when taken regularly. EFAs also look after the tissues of the body, helping you build strong, lean muscles while supporting fat loss.
6. Improve Skin and Hair -- Just like with the bones, EFAs strengthen and protect the structure of these tissues from damage and assist in moisture retention. Skin is firmer, smoother and more elastic while the hair is shiny, soft and less brittle.
7. Relieve Arthritis Pain -- Just like with muscles, EFAs can be helpful for anyone suffering from pain associated osteoarthritis. EFAs protect the tissues of the bones while reducing inflammation throughout the entire body to prevent and/or improve pain associated with this condition.
8.Correct PMS Symptoms -- Each month, women can experience symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) such as cramping, fatigue and mood swings. With it's anti-inflammatory and mental health benefits, EFAs can help correct these uncomfortable symptoms.
9. Strengthen the Immune System -- EFAs are also needed to keep the immune system strengthened against the many threats we encounter in our daily environment like germs and pollutants. One of the most common identifiers of an EFA deficiency is a weakened immune system or one that isn't functioning properly otherwise.
10. Soothe Ulcerative Colitis -- This inflammatory bowel disease affects the large intestine and the rectum. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss and fever. EFAs can help improve symptoms, lessening their severity, but cannot cause remission of symptoms.
If you're concerned you're not getting enough essential fatty acids in your diet, there are products available in liquid or softgel form to help you boost your intake. Find the perfect essential fatty acid supplement for your needs at eVitamins and check back next Monday for another great supplement!
Products you may like:
New Chapter Wholemega Whole Fish Oil Why you may like this product? Get a healthy dose of
essential fatty acids with
this fish oil product from New
Chapter. Produced from 100
percent wild caught Alaskan
salmon, this supplement
contains extra virgin fish oil
that provides 1,500 mg of
fatty acids per serving.
Genesis Today GenEssentials Superfruit Oil 3-6-7-9 Blend Why you may like this product? If you want to more essential
and nonessential fatty acids
into your diet but don't want
a fish-based product, try this
supplement from Genesis Today.
Flax seeds provides omega-3,
6, 7 and 9 that protect the
entire body. You also get a
blend of fruit and seed oils
including coconut and sea
buckthorn for additional
How Many Omegas Should You Be Taking? Essential fatty acids like omega-3s are often in the news for their helpful benefits, but how many of them should you aim to have in a day? Keep reading to find out.
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them in excess. Learn more about the fats your body needs and stop
thinking about fat as the bad guy.
Omega-3s May Improve Memory in Young Adults We'd all like to have a stronger memory, but for college students and
young professionals, it can seem like the deciding factor in their
success. Learn more about the new study that suggests omega-3
supplementation could be help them get the edge.
Statements made about specific vitamins, supplements, procedures or other items sold on or through this website have not been evaluated by eVitamins or by the United States Food and Drug Administration. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. As always, please consult with a licensed doctor or physician before starting any diet, exercise or supplement program, before taking any vitamin or medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a problem.