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The Role of Omega-3s in Health and Weight Loss

A lot of fuss around vitamins, supplements, and diets can give people the idea that there’s a “one size fits all” game plan when it comes to weight loss. The fact is that we are all made differently, and what works for one person may not work for another. The choices we make, the genetics we have, and the lifestyles we live will help shape our health and physical appearance. 

Vitamins and diets aren’t the only things that can help us on our journey toward a healthy lifestyle, though. When we educate ourselves on what human bodies need to move, burn energy, and drive an overall healthy system, we can find out exactly what our bodies need to operate at peak efficiency. 

Omega-3s/fish oil has been around the trends for the last 20 years (probably even longer than that). The power of the omega-3 supplements is so reliable that many scientists around the world have done studies on why the oil seems to help in weight loss and, possibly, energy. 

What Is Omega-3s/Fish Oil?

Omega-3 fatty acids (commonly found in fish oil) is associated with fat reduction and weight loss, as certain studies have shown there’s an increase in metabolic rate when Omega-3s are taken daily. Other benefits that have come along with targeted intake of omega-3s are an increase in plasma adiponectin levels, altered fat oxidations, and altered energy levels.  

So… what does that mean? 

It means that your body needs omega-3s to work correctly. And since our bodies do not naturally produce these fatty acids, we need to get them through our diet. Foods like tuna, salmon, flaxseed, tofu, and soybeans, among others, are associated with this acid, and, like many people, you may not be eating enough to have your body absorb omega-3s properly. Supplements therefore may be the right avenue for you. 

Several Types of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

While there are many kinds of fatty acids, we can categorize omega-3s into two main types. There are the essential omega-3 fatty acids (Alpha-Linolenic Acid) that are found in a variety of plant-based foods, such as flax seeds and their oils. Then there are the long-chain omega-3 fatty acids that are known as Docosahexaenoic or Eicosapentaenoic acids. You may know them as EPA or DHA. These can be found in fish, seaweed, and other fish oil supplements.

Studies on Omega-3s Role in Weight Loss

In 2015, China conducted a study that looked at the factors of whether fish oil helps reduce weight. They concluded that: 

“Current evidence cannot support an exact anti-obesity role of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in overweight/obese subjects. However, these subjects may benefit from reducing abdominal fat with fish oil supplementation especially when combined with life modification intervention.”

Dr. Du, Dr. Feng, Dr. Jin, and Dr. Su found that omega-3s/fish oil did not support the theory of weight loss reduction. However, other studies have provided contrasting evidence. A smaller study conducted in 1997 in France showed that six young adults experienced an increase in their metabolic rate by 3.8% after taking six grams of fish oil once a day for 12 weeks. 

Conclusion

As a human being, your body needs these essential omega-3 fatty acids. While studies have shown that it can increase metabolic rates and energy levels, there is no solid proof that omega-3s have a significant impact on weight loss. All doctors and studies mentioned here claim that this fatty acid does help with your metabolism, which is a contributing factor to helping an individual lose weight (faster metabolism, more weight loss). 

The doctors and authors who penned these studies believe that a healthy diet, with increased physical activity and the addition of omega-3s, can result in improvements to your health. Remember, if you are on a personal health journey (at the beginning, middle, or end), reach out to Bee Healthy Clinics for assistance. We’re ready to be your partners, creating a plan tailored to your unique needs – with any vitamins, supplements, and targeted food plans you require. Reach out to us at our location nearest you.

| Nutrition, Tips