Omega-6 Fatty Acids
As promised from my last blog here is the next one on omega-6 fatty acids…
Omega fatty acids are essential to a healthy diet and play a crucial part in so many bodily functions. There are two main types of fatty acids we get in our diet, saturated and unsaturated fats. Omega-6 fatty acids are unsaturated fats called polyunsaturated (PUFAs) fats. These fats usually are liquid form at room temperature. Omega-3 and omega-6 fall under the polyunsaturated fats.
You might have heard over the years that omega-6 is bad for you and that it causes inflammation in the body which can lead the a whole host of other illnesses. But the depends where you are getting them from and how much of them you are getting. As mentioned above they are essential - our bodies need them and we need to get them though our diet or supplement form in the healthiest way possible. Cutting them out of your diet would do more harm then good!
Omega-6’s can be found in plant based oils, evening primrose oil, borage oil, blackcurrant seed oil, nuts, seeds, eggs and beef. When including omega-6 foods in your diet you want to make sure you go for the most natural, unprocessed and organic types. Stay away from genetically modified and over refined types - these will have a negative effect on your health. There are a four different types of Omega-6’s fatty acids, Linoleic acid (LA), gamma linoleic (GLA), arachidonic acid (ARA) and conjugated linoleic acid (CLA).
Some benefits of omega-6’s
- Certain types of omega-6 may help treat rheumatoid arthritis. Evening primrose which is an omega-6 fatty acid has been shown to reduce inflammation and pain in our bodies.
- Eating a diet with the correct ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids can help support bone health.
- Some studies have shown that GLA can help reduce blood pressure.
- GLA has also been shown to help reduce nerve pain, and may be beneficial for people with diabetic neuropathy.
- Omega-6 fatty acids lower the risk of heart disease and improve circulation, especially when switching from a diet high in saturated fat to unsaturated fats.
In my next blog I will write about omega-9 and why it’s important to get the correct ratio of omega’s. Always speak to a Doctor before adding a new supplement to your diet as they can have an effect on existing conditions or medications you may be taking.