As more and more studies are released, the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids continue to come to light. From helping your kids sleep better to increasing our protection against cardiovascular disease and cancer, consuming omega-3s is an easy and sure way to living a healthier life. While most of these health benefits revolve around physical benefits like keeping your heart healthy, omega-3 fatty acids can have a positive impact on your cognitive and emotional health as well. A recent study has indicated that omega-3 levels can also reduce symptoms of depression.
Nutra Ingredients reports the study was published by a research team out of the National Institutes of Health, the University of Delaware, and Eastern Virginia Medical School in the Journal of Nutrition and found that “American women with higher blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids have a 49% reduction in risk of elevated depressive symptoms.” Read more about omega-3s and arthritis
In the journal, the research team wrote, “Our study findings support the hypothesis of a protective effect of n-3 fatty acids, both [n-3 highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFAs; at least 20 carbons), n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs; at least 18 carbons)], against depressive symptoms, particularly among women.”
The study was led by May Beydoun, PhD, of the National Institute on Aging, and it “assessed if there was an association between omega-3 intakes and symptoms of depression using the 20-item Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression Scale (CES-D) in 1,746 adults aged between 30 and 65.”Read more about the best sources for omega-3s
Ultimately, the data indicated that “elevated depressive symptoms (EDS) were prevalent in 25.6% of women, and 18.1% of men. Adequate intakes of linoleic acid (LA) and alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) were observed in 43 to 59% of men and women. However, significantly fewer men and women achieved adequate intakes of EPA and DHA ranged from 5.2% and 17.2%.”
The numbers also indicated that the “highest intakes of omega-3 PUFAs was associated with a significant 49% reduction in the risk of elevated depressive symptoms in women.”
Depression is a mental illness that can be extremely debilitating. To learn about depression as well as treatment options, please visit the National Institute of Mental Health.
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