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To keep our arteries in good condition and to prevent clogging them up with increased deposits of bad lipids, we don’t just have to be proactive toward improving our nutritional habits. Many other factors play a role as well. Carrying too much weight or not getting enough exercise can influence this process negatively and of course smoking is known to be a major problem when it comes to the health of our blood vessels.
The group of “good” polyunsaturated fats, including omega-3 fatty acids from fish and krill, have proven to have a positive effect on our general health – they promote healthy blood vessels, counteract inflammation and beneficially modify our blood lipids.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids – how do they work?
Usually fish oil is extracted from mackerel, salmon, tuna or herring as these types of fish contain a high level of essential fatty acids.
In a healthy person the digestion process converts the “good” fats into these components:
eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)
docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
But this conversion can only function properly, when there are a certain amount of specific enzymes present in our body. If our diet is too rich in sugar, alcohol or trans-fats, our enzyme levels are most likely too low to allow our system to sufficiently convert and absorb them. Additional interference in this metabolic process may be caused through smoking, stress and viral infections (like the common cold).
Due to the fact that our body cannot create these essential substances on its own, it is advisable to complete our diet with a fish oil supplement of our choice.
What is EICOSAPENTAENOIC ACID (EPA)?
EPA is an essential nutrient, which is required for a range of biochemical functions. EPA must be consumed in the diet or in supplement form to guarantee our body an adequate supply. Clinical Benefits include:
Reduces a range of inflammatory conditions
Regulates mood swings caused by stress
What is DOCOSAHEXAENOIC ACID (DHA)?
Our bodies naturally produce a certain amount of DHA, but not sufficiently to ensure proper biochemical functioning. To assure adequate supply it is recommended to consume pre-formed DHA in the diet, or in supplement form. Clinical benefits include:
Cardiovascular health: helps maintain normal, healthy blood lipid profiles
Essential for the development of a healthy central nervous system in infants
Supports cognitive functions of the human brain
You may have heard of the exciting new addition to essential fatty acids EPA/DHA called krill oil.
Krill is a shrimp-like crustacean harvested from the pristine Antarctic Ocean where it exists as an abundant renewable resource. Their short life span of 1-2 years is naturally balanced by their phenomenal rate of reproduction, as several hundred million tonnes generate annually, of which only 120,000 tonnes are harvested for human consumption, thus guaranteeing sufficient krill for all marine mammals, fish and birds. Conservation of krill is strictly regulated to preserve ecological and environmental balance, and to ensure supply for its amazing benefits to human health.
With a unique molecular composition of omega-3 fatty acids, krill oil has been shown to effectively maintain normal healthy cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation while also being a particularly strong anti-oxidant.
Warning: If you suffer allergic reactions to shellfish, krill oil should be avoided.
The special benefits of Krill Oil:
· Sustaining healthy tissue
· Strong anti-oxidant
· Minimises skin degeneration
· Supports the anti-ageing process
To retain maximum freshness and prevent the oils from rancidity choose oils that are stored in a refrigerator. A local health food store or pharmacy usually will do this. If the oils become rancid they can cause more inflammation and damage within the body. If reflux or a fishy after taste is noticed after consumption it may well be that you have poor quality fish oil.
Whichever type you choose, look for a reputable brand that follows good manufacturing processes and uses sustainably harvested oil.