WHAT ARE OMEGAS AND WHY DO YOU NEED THEM?
Everybody is unique but we all need omega fatty acids throughout life.
The omegas, also known as essential fatty acids (EFAs), are ‘healthy fats’ required by your body every day for proper cell function as well as overall development, growth and health.
Your body cannot make omegas, so it’s essential that you obtain them from your diet. We rely on two main sources: plants and cold-water fish. Modern lifestyle and eating habits, however, often result in deficiencies and imbalances, which can impair health, create inflammation, and contribute to chronic disease.
Supplementing your diet with omega-rich oils is an effective way to ensure that you get the right amount of EFAs daily to prevent or improve poor health. Whatever your dietary preference, health focus or stage of life, Melrose Pure Omegas make it easy to find the right sources of essential fats for you and your family.
The importance of balancing omegas
An unfortunate characteristic of the modern Western diet is that it often invites an over-consumption of omega-6. For many of us, our ratio of omega 3:6 is closer to 1:20 – 1:10 rather than the desired ratio of 1:1.
High levels of omega-6 in the body may create an inflammatory environment making it more susceptible to disease. Excessive omega-6 may block the pathways for plant-derived omega-3 ALA to convert into EPA and DHA.
To promote good health outcomes, we ideally want to establish and maintain at least a 1:4 ratio of omega-3 and omega-6. Supplementing with Melrose Pure Omegas alongside a healthy diet is a sustainable way to balance omegas.
Our ambassador Steph Lowe discusses the reasons behind the imbalance in our omega intake, and how to improve this balance in her article Omega-3 and omega-6 fats: the balance.
The difference between plant and ocean-derived omegas – ALA, EPA, DHA
There are two groups of EFAs that you need to eat in the right balance.
The first is omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and its derivatives, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The richest sources of omega-3s include flaxseeds (ALA) and cold-water fish (EPA and DHA).
The second group of EFAs are omega-6 fatty acid linoleic acid (LA), and its derivatives, gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) and arachidonic acid (AA). The healthiest sources of omega-6s are cold-pressed seed oils, such as evening primrose, hemp and sacha inchi.
Pure Ocean Omegas, such as Omega Fish Oil, are a brilliant source of omega-3 EPA and DHA. These omega-3 derivatives are easily absorbed and ‘ready to go’. As the richest source of readily bioavailable EPA and DHA, fish oil is the ideal way to consume omega-3 fatty acids. Supplementing with fish oil has been extensively researched in relation to many common diseases, and is shown to have a powerful anti-inflammatory impact.
Our resident clinical nutritionist Cliff Harvey discusses omega-3 supplementation in his article Why you should supplement with fish oil.
Pure Plant Omegas provide a rich source of omega-3 ALA, which requires the body to convert it to EPA and DHA (the ‘work-horses’). Conversion of ALA into EPA and DHA can be low, which means the intake of plant sourced EFAs may need to be higher for the desired outcome. It is, however, quite attainable for those with a vegetarian or vegan diet or an intolerance to fish to consume adequate omega-3.