Essential Fatty Acids Simplified

Monday, 26 April 2010 12:34 by Trilogy

Mom Giving Daughter Supplement If you’re like most people, you are probably wondering, “What are essential fatty acids?” Or, “How could something with the word ‘fat’ in it be good for me?” The short answer is essential fatty acids (or EFA’s) are essential because our bodies alone cannot produce them – they must be obtained through our diet. EFA’s are long molecules that are used in the construction of the walls of our cells, known as the cell membranes. The cell membranes are critical for both nutritional processes and the excretion of toxic waste products. Without EFA’s, the body cannot make or repair cell membranes correctly. EFA’s also regulate bodily functions such as blood pressure, clotting, fertility, heart rate and immunity. For these reasons, they are often referred to as “good fats”.

Now that you know a little more about essential fatty acids, you may wonder, “Are there different types of EFA’s?” And if so, “What are the differences?” More...

Are all Omega-3s Created Equal?

Monday, 26 April 2010 12:31 by Trilogy

Girl Pondering There seems to be a lot of confusion out there as to the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids. This article will break down the major sources of omega-3’s and give you the information you need to make educated choices.

First, there are three main types of omega-3 fatty acids: DHA, EPA and ALA. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (Eicosapentaenoic acid) are found in fish and ALA (alpha-linolenic acid ) is found in plants like flaxseed. When you choose an omega-3 source, we suggest that you select a healthy balance of all fatty acids, but make sure you are getting enough EPA and DHA, as these fatty acids are responsible for the majority of the health benefits of omega-3’s.

This is important to remember: if a food or supplement states it is high in omega-3, it does not necessarily mean it is high in EPA and DHA. For example, although flaxseed oil is six times richer than most fish oils in omega-3’s, flaxseed oil contains mainly ALA, not DHA and EPA. Unfortunately, our bodies can only convert ALA into DHA and EPA in very small amounts. Scientific studies have revealed that fatty acids from fish or fish oil, but not flaxseed oil, benefited patients with cardiovascular disease and ADHD. More...

Lawsuit Raises Safety Issues Related to Competing Brands of Fish Oil Supplements

Wednesday, 17 March 2010 17:00 by Trilogy

Fish OilOn Tuesday, March 2, 2010, a lawsuit was filed in a San Francisco Superior Court, which alleged that several popular brands of fish oil supplements have illegally undisclosed and unnecessarily high levels of contamination from toxic PCB compounds. Widely regarded as cancer-causing agents, PCB’s were outlawed from manufacture in 1979. The lawsuit names eight manufacturers and retailers of fish and fish liver oils (as well as shark and shark liver oils) which tested positive for PCB contamination that exceeded the limits approved for human consumption under California’s Proposition 65. The initial defendants named are CVS Pharmacy, Inc.; General Nutrition Corp. (GNC); Now Health Group, Inc.; Omega Protein, Inc.; Pharmavite LLC (Nature Made brand); Rite Aid Corp.; Solgar, Inc.; and TwinLab Corp.

These allegations should give consumers cause for grave concern. Although many currently marketed fish oil supplements feature claims of being “treated” to remove or reduce levels of PCB’s and other toxins, many fail to accurately state the residual levels of PCB’s remaining after “treatment”. This lack of disclosure leaves consumers completely in the dark, not knowing whether or not they are ingesting high levels of PCB’s when taking their omega-3 supplement. The allegations are deeply disturbing, as many consumers regularly take their supplements every day. More...