FISH OIL, OMEGA-3 AND OMEGA-6 OILS IN IBD
Omega 3 oils come from fatty fish like salmon and tuna, but also from nuts and seeds like chia and flax seed. They have been shown to
- Help the immune system and lessen inflammation (anti-inflammatory)
- Reduce pain
- Improve how your brain functions
Omega 6 oils are in vegetable oils and grains, most meats and often fast food and processed foods. As a result they are high in the Standard American or Western diet. These fats are pro-inflammatory and they are important in healing cuts and injuries. They are in farm raised salmon too, but there's much more omega-3 oils so the balance is more anti-inflammatory.
Studies now show that certain genes can change the body's metabolism of these fats. That's why a person with one of the genes may respond to taking extra omega 3 oils and someone else might not. There's also active research on how polyunsaturated omega-3 and omega-6 oils change the microbiome (the bacteria or flora) in the lower intestine. So one day soon, we will learn how to use this knowledge to personalize the nutrition and medicines for each individual.
This article, as well as all others, was reviewed and edited by a member of our Medical Advisory Board.
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