The Difference Between Omega-3 and Omega-6
There’s no denying the health benefits of omegas. However, it’s important to understand which omega is right for you and why you need it. For instance, do you need more omega-3 or should you be supplementing with omega-6? Find out here…
Why Do I Need Omegas?
Fatty acids are usually classified as saturated, monounsaturated or polyunsaturated depending on their chemical structure1. Omega-3 and omega-6 are types of polyunsaturated fats. They are essential to our health as they can’t be made in sufficient amounts by the body. In the UK, however, we tend to have an imbalance of both fats due to our diets.
Where Can I Find Omega-3 Fats?
The primary animal sources of Omega-3 is fish oil, so by eating at least two portions of fish a week, making sure one is oily, most of us are able to get enough omega-3 fats in our diet. These can be found in mackerel, kippers, herring, trout, sardines, salmon and fresh tuna.
Other omega-3 sources include soy beans, flax seeds, chia seeds and walnuts. In addition, pastured eggs, omega-3 enriched eggs, meats from grass-fed animals, grass-fed dairy products, hemp seeds, as well as some vegetables like spinach, Brussel's sprouts and purslane2 are not as high in omega-3, but do contain small amounts.
Where Can I Find Omega-6 Fats?
Omega-6 can be found in vegetable oils such as rapeseed, corn, sunflower and some nuts. As a result, they can be found in many processed foods like pastries and cakes, biscuits, crisps, snacks, takeaways, ready meals, bread margarine and cereal. For this reason it’s unlikely you will need to up your omega-6 levels.
For those that aren’t able to have an omega-rich diet, a supplement like Seven Seas Cod Liver Oil should be considered. This contains the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, which are important for normal heart and brain function. The beneficial effects for heart function are obtained with an intake of 250mg EPA and DHA per day. For brain function, 250mg DHA per day is needed.
What are the benefits of fish oil?
The main benefits of fish oil is that it is rich in essential Omega-3 fatty acids. The health benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids include:
The Omega-3 fatty acids in fish (specifically DHA and EPA) support the healthy function of the heart.
There is high concentration of DHA in the brain and this appears to be important for the normal functioning of the brain.
Fish oil is a food supplement that is derived from the bodies of different species of oily fish. Seven Seas uses only high-quality fish that has been purified to ensure that it is free from any unnecessary materials. It is then concentrated to give it a higher potency and to maximise its efficiency as a food supplement.
We've come a long way since fish oil was administered on a medicine spoon. Today' fish oil is available in the form of easy-to-swallow high-strength fish oil capsukes that are almost completely flavourless, which makes them easy to integrate into a daily routine as an effective dietary supplement. In this way, fish oil can be considered to be one of the best Omega-3 food supplements.
Fish oil is a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids – essential nutrients that the body cannot produce its own. We all need Omega-3 fatty acids and fish oil is a convenient way to ensure the recommended amount.
Fish oil and fish oil supplements (e.g. fish oil capsules) are particularly suitable for:
– People who do not enjoy eating fish and so find it difficult to achieve optimal Omega-3 intake from their regular diet.
– Those who enjoy fish but are keen to ensure that they are getting as much as their body needs.
– People who are taking multivitamin supplements and are looking to combine those with Omega-3.
– Anyone who is interested in maintaining the healthy function of the heart, brain and eyes.