11 Benefits of Omega 3 – For Serving and properties

Omega 3

Many weight loss diets suggest a drastic reduction in the consumption of fat, but if there is a type of nutrient that can not miss on their menu are exactly the type of essential fatty acids omega 3.

What is omega 3 exactly?

The omega 3 fatty acids are a type of fat with unsaturated double bonds in the hydrocarbon chain, and are considered as the only type of fat that the human organism can not synthesize.

For this reason, they are considered essential and must be present on the menu regularly to prevent nutrient deficiency.

Types of Omega 3

There are three types of omega 3 fatty acids type:

  • Alpha- linolenic acid (ALA): found primarily in vegetable oils, nuts and seeds in flaxseed, it is the most common type of fatty acid in Brazilian power;
  • Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA): obtained from the consumption of fish (such as salmon) and milk;
  • Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA): as well as EPA is also found in fish oil, is known as "omega-3-marine."

Most of the benefits of omega-3 is associated with EPA and DHA, rather than the alpha-linolenic acid, which is of vegetable origin. As the body can convert ALA into EPA and DHA only in small proportion, the ideal is to prioritize the consumption of omega-3 animal.

For Serving

The omega 3 is an integral part of cell membranes, and this may interfere with the signaling pathway in each cell (receiver). That is, the fatty acid affects the function of receptors that are found on the outside of the cells.

Thus, they are directly responsible for the production of hormones that control the contraction and relaxation of the walls of each artery. These hormones act still in the metabolic processes related to coagulation and some inflammatory processes.


Scientists believe that, thanks to the action of omega-3 in inflammatory processes and in the regulation of gene function, the fatty acid may help prevent heart problems such as heart attack and atherosclerosis (a condition which leads to obstruction of blood flow in the arteries).

The omega 3 can also help reduce inflammation associated with overweight, reduce blood glucose levels and improve frameworks rheumatoid arthritis and depression.

In simple terms, we can say that the main properties of omega 3 are:

  • Training of eye retina;
  • Synthesis of hormones;
  • proper functioning of the immune system;
  • Formation of cell membranes;
  • Combat inflammation;
  • Maintenance of skin health;
  • Composition myelin sheath of neurons;
  • Lowering blood pressure;
  • Performance in chemical communication between nerve cells.

The balance of omega 3 and omega 6

To function properly and perform all the metabolic processes that ensure the maintenance of the ideal state we know as "health", the body needs to maintain a proper ratio between omega 3 and omega 6.

Although both are essential fatty acids, the body needs of each in different concentrations. Several studies have shown that the body needs two pieces of omega 6 for each part of omega 3. Or a ratio of 2: 1 in favor of omega 6.

Thanks to the high consumption of vegetable oils and processed foods and decreased presence of marine fish at the table, the population of Western countries shows a completely contraindicated relationship of these nutrients.

In the United States, for example, that dominate the list of the worst indicators related to nutrition, the ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 is 10: 1. Besides causing inflammation related to obesity, such a large disparity between the two types of fatty acids may be associated with a higher incidence of heart disease, depression and diabetes.

To reduce the problem, and increase consumption of foods rich in omega 3, it is important to control the use of oils like soybean them, canola and corn.

Benefits of Omega 3

See how omega 3 properties are beneficial to health and fitness:

1. It can help you lose weight

Traditionally, Asian people always had some of the lowest BMIs the planet. Although there is no single factor that can be considered responsible for this characteristic, the high consumption of marine fish by the populations of countries like Japan is certainly related.

While in Brazil we consumed until recently less than 10 kg of fish per person per year, that number came to be five times higher in Japan. What does that mean?

In terms of weight, consumption of fish such as tuna and salmon can be a determining factor when we consider that the omega 3 fatty acid has the potential to reduce inflammatory processes.

Chronic inflammation can cause a change in control hunger and satiety mechanisms by stimulating the release of hormones that increase appetite and hindering the action of those with opposing action.

Because the inflammatory process also improves insulin resistance and enhances fluid retention, reduce inflammation can facilitate, and the weight loss. In addition, like all fat has slower digestion, to consume a portion of grilled fish you will be naturally stimulating satiety.

In a study just 3 weeks Physiological published in Research participants added 2.8 grams per day of omega 3 to food (in combination with exercise and a reduced calorie diet) lost 1.5 kg more than just volunteers They exercised and dieted.

2. Controls insulin

This is one of the benefits of omega 3 which can be useful both for those who are eyeing the glucose levels in the blood and for those who need to lose weight.

By adding a source of Omega 3 to the plate, you will be lowering the glycemic index of your meal, which in turn translates into a lower release of insulin into the bloodstream. And less insulin means better blood glucose control and a reduction in the risk of type 2 diabetes in.

And how high insulin levels promote fat accumulation in the body, the greater the release of more inevitable hormone will be weight gain.

3. Accelerates metabolism

Fats are all high-calorie, but not all of them are equal from the point of view of health and balance. Unsaturated fats can actually stimulate fat burning by raising the metabolism and facilitating weight loss, factors that are so considerable benefits of omega 3.

In a published study in 2015 in the specialized journal Scientific Reports, Japanese researchers found that mice that were fed a diet containing fish oil showed not only less body fat and less weight.

These animals also showed lower levels of fasting glucose and insulin, as well as a higher body temperature than the animals who received the fish oil containing omega 3.

What's more, the mice that consumed the oil showed a faster metabolism, significantly burning more calories than the control group.

For researchers, this result can be explained by a possible increase in brown fat, a type of fat that burns more calories.

4. Protects the heart

Numerous studies have shown that consuming foods rich in omega 3 regularly (at least two servings of fish per week) can be a good way to avoid heart problems.

While DHA helps to stabilize the heart rate (avoiding arrhythmias), EPA lowers blood pressure, improves blood flow, reduces inflammation and triglycerides and prevents the formation of clots in the arteries.

In a famous Italian study conducted with over eleven thousand patients who had suffered a heart attack before, it was observed that those who began to consume 1000 mg of fish oil daily for three years had a lower risk of having another heart attack or dying other cardiac complications.

An American research has shown that men who eat fish once or more a week had an 50% lower risk of dying from a sudden heart attack than men who eat fish less than once a month.

5. Prevents cancer

The polyunsaturated fatty acids may act to prevent some cancers, such as breast, prostate and intestine (colon).

Research indicates that the oil can even inhibit tumor metastasis to other body tissues, such as in the case of breast cancer. The omega-3 helps reduce the activity of estrogens that promote the appearance of the breast tumor and its spread to other organs through the circulation.

6. improves cholesterol levels and reduces triglyceride

Although our body requires both types of cholesterol (HDL and LDL) to its proper functioning, excess LDL from the circulation tends to deposit on the wall of the arteries, reducing blood vessel diameter and hindering the passage of blood.

As a result, there is an obstruction - which can be total or partial - of blood flow, which may lead to the development of serious heart disease and even lead to death through a massive myocardial infarction.

Unlike other oils of animal rearing LDL rates and often reduce levels of HDL (good cholesterol), the benefits of omega 3 extend not only to reduce the bad cholesterol but also increase the numbers of good.

HDL acts as a small broom which eliminates LDL deposits, reducing inflammation in artery walls and increasing the diameter of blood vessels.

7. It is a natural anti-inflammatory

The omega 3 properties in combating inflammation are not restricted to the cardiac system. Studies indicate that the fatty acid increases the concentration of prostaglandin PG3 class in circulation.

Those substances which act as hormones, have anti-inflammatory effect and may be effective in combating joint inflammation (as in rheumatoid arthritis), lupus, psoriasis, and even Crohn's disease, which is characterized by inflammation of digestive tube.

8. Prevents Depression

In the last two decades, a number of researchers have been working on a very important issue for the world's population: how to prevent and treat depression naturally.

Although many studies still require further investigation, a pattern seems to repeat around the globe: people who consume more fish have lower rates of depression.

The relationship between the consumption of cold water fish and brain health can be explained by the action of EPA and DHA. Both fatty acids help maintain stable levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain, stimulating neuronal growth in the frontal cortex and further improve blood flow in the region.

Another of the benefits of omega 3 for those with depression is that it enhances the effects of antidepressants and can even improve some of the symptoms of bipolar disorder.

9. Central to cognitive function

To function properly, our entire nervous system needs omega 3 - specifically DHA. About 60% of the total weight of the brain is composed of fat, and no less than this total is 15-20% of DHA.

This means that 9-12% of the weight of the brain is due to the presence of docosahexaenoic acid, which when deficient can lead to a loss of cognitive function or else delay the neurological development of children.

So we have that, and do good for the heart, control cholesterol and help you lose weight, there are benefits of omega 3 also to keep the brain functioning in order and avoid the risk of degenerative diseases like Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis and difficulty learning and memorization.

10. It improves sports performance

physically active have more reason to pay attention to omega 3 intake: nutrient improves aerobic performance, since it increases the body's ability to absorb oxygen.

This is because the Omega 3 reduces the blood viscosity, an effect that ultimately improve the distribution of blood and oxygen to the muscle tissue.

Athletes who consume about 4 grams of omega 3 every day begin to show performance gains in less than a month after the regular use of the fatty acid.

11. Essential for the proper development of the infant brain

In a study published in 2013 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers found that children aged 3 to 5 years who received an omega 3 supplement showed better performance in intelligence tests, learning and vocabulary.

Other research has shown a relationship between the disorder attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, and low levels of omega 3.

Children with ADHD tend to have omega 3 fatty acid deficiency in the brain, which has led doctors to reiterate the need of the nutrient still early in life.

Video: A Great Benefit of Omega 3 and Alerts

Tips nutritionist Patricia leite in the video below:

Natural sources of omega 3

Check foods with a higher content of omega 3 you to add regularly to your diet:

  • Salmon;
  • Sardine;
  • Tuna fish;
  • Seaweed;
  • cod liver oil;
  • Seeds or linseed oil;
  • Chia;
  • nuts;
  • Canola.


There is no exact dose of omega 3 for all individuals, but to prevent deficiency symptoms and enjoy all the benefits of omega 3 mentioned above, the World Health Organization recommends a weekly consumption of:

  • 2 or 3 portions of cold water fish.


  • 1.6 g of omega 3 men;
  • 1.1 g for women;
  • a ratio of omega 6 / omega 3 2: 1.

The best way to get omega 3 is still feeding through, but it is possible to increase the consumption of fatty acids with the use of fish oil-based supplements.

You can find the nutrient in the form of capsules of 500 or 1000 mg, to be used by expert professional guidance.


A low concentration of omega 3 in the body can cause:

  • Cognitive impairment;
  • Fatigue;
  • Weak memory;
  • Dry skin;
  • Heart problems;
  • Poor circulation;
  • Mood swings and depression.

Despite all the benefits of omega 3 for health, talk to your doctor or nutritionist before making use of the nutrient in supplement form.

Knowing all these benefits of omega 3 for health and fitness, you will increase your intake of fatty acid sources and supplements? Comment below!