They say that when humans stopped living in nomadic tribes and discovered agriculture, their physical development contracted sharply. We are referring to a few thousand years ago, a time that marked the transition from fish-based nutrition to cereal-based nutrition, poor in the precious fatty acids that fish offered.
Today, nutritional supplementation with Omega 3 is one of the most popular topics, but twenty years ago, when I attended the courses of Barry Sears, the doctor who proved the importance of this substance, talking about low dose inflammation was a topic for few.
Research has continued but Omega 3 pearls are still an infrequent habit compared to the value of this nutrient, limited to those who play competitive sports or those who have had a cardiovascular accident.
However, I would like to focus on some points that I often share with non-professional friends, starting with false myths.
Omega 3s are for the heart
Yes and no. Omega 3s are ALSO useful for the heart, but their most interesting action is the anti-inflammatory effect on the whole body. Please note, modulating inflammation does not mean getting rid of inflammation because this completely physiological response is necessary in many cases. Good inflammation stimulates the body’s reparative processes and defends it from pathogens, and Omega 3s produce this response.
Omega 3s are useful in pregnancy
During pregnancy and, subsequently, during breastfeeding, the mother’s “normal” need for Omega 3s is combined with the quantities necessary for the fetus’s development and then the the newborn’s growth. In particular, DHA is involved in the correct development of the neuronal system of the brain and eyes.
The intake of DHA at this stage of life has been associated with improved hand-eye coordination, improved motor skills, and concentration of infants. Not to mention sleep quality, which seems much better among those born to mothers who have regularly taken Omega 3. Finally, DHA reduces the risk of premature births.
Omega 3s are „heavy“ and come back up
Not anymore! Foods rich in Omega 3 such as sardines or other fish are not easy to digest but purified and now microemulsified fish oil does not cause any digestibility problems.
You have to choose a quality product with technology that makes it more available. At MyCli, we have chosen one of the finest raw materials and a very effective micro emulsification process.
As the patients say–“you can’t feel it”.
Omega 3s help in case of stress
True. For example, depressive forms, in general, are linked to imbalances of the intestine-brain axis that alter serotonin production, also called the happiness hormone, and it is always due to their anti-inflammatory action that Omega 3s bring benefits on this front. Depression should not be underestimated: according to the WHO, it is the most frequent underlying cause of health problems. The recommended amount is 800-1000 mg between EPA and DHA.
Vegans cannot take Omega 3
False. Vegans have Omega 3 supplements derived from algae available, but it should also be noted that these are not as rich in EPA and DHA as those derived from fish. In the case of the so-called Omega 3 precursors, i.e. foods that stimulate the production of Omega 3 by the body, we know that this process is not very efficient: stress and carbohydrates decrease conversion. So… fish or seaweed!
Those who play sports must take Omega 3
They do not „have to“, but a woman or a man who plays sports with intelligence will find great benefits over time because participating in sports creates inflammation and puts stress on all bodies. It has been proven that post-workout recovery is shorter in those who supplement their diet with Omega 3, whether they practice endurance sports, or strength training.
Some studies claim that supplementation with EPA and DHA can improve neuromuscular abilities. Others have shown that there is a link between Omega 3 intake and an increase in the concentration of nitrogen monoxide, resulting in improvement in the activity of the cardiovascular system with obvious benefits in endurance sports.
Other studies indicate that in post-workout the immune system is strongly stressed and in these cases Omega 3 acts as a regulator, with cytospecific activities against various protagonists: they activate macrophages, strengthen neutrophil granulocytes, and then finish with fundamental activities in the regulation of allergic responses. In fact, people with allergies often benefit from Omega 3 supplementation and are positively surprised by them.
The production of Omega 3 is not good for the environment
False. Today the most important producers have shown that they can manage fishing with sustainability criteria and the whole process is certified. The purity of the fish oil is guaranteed at the origin to obtain a high-quality product, without causing environmental damage. Among the most authoritative certifications, IFOS is certainly a guarantee.
Roberto Centanini is the General Manager of Perlapelle. Graduated in Pharmacy in 2001, he has worked for more than 15 years on the coordination and training of professional teams in the pharmaceutical industry. He has devoted a lot of time to sports and physical activity, personally exploring the nutritional aspects of competitive performance. He has always studied and explored various issues related to nutritional supplementation as a strategy of prevention and defense of health.
Dr. Roberto Centanini
Pharmacist and Nutritional Coach