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Omega-3 fat improves Brain Blood Flow

by Dr. Jamesh Meschino on

December 15, 2023 in

Source: Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease (May 19, 2017)
Nutrition / Natural Medicine Update (May 25, 2017)

The research I am citing today was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s disease on May 19, 2017.  The study lends further support to the mounting evidence showing that omega-3 fats help to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Can Omega-3 reduce cognitive decline and increase mental health ?

In addition, this study showed that individuals with higher omega-3 fat status also had better blood flow to key areas of the brain required for mental performance and the prevention of age-related memory loss. Subjects with higher omega-3 fat status also 

showed better mental performance or cognition upon computerized testing of their neurocognitive status. The study involved 166 patients from a psychiatric referral clinic for which omega-3 fat status had been measured.  The subjects with a high omega-3 fat status showed improved blood flow to key regions of the brain important for learning, memory, and the prevention of depression and dementia.

Does Omega-3 supplements improve cognitive function?

Many recent studies have shown a correlation between more optimal omega-3 fat status and intake levels and the prevention of key steps associated with Alzheimer’s disease. 

For instance, in human observational studies and animal studies, we have seen that omega-3 fats help prevent the buildup of beta-amyloid plaque and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain, which are unique features seen in the Alzheimer’s disease brain. Omega-3 fats also reduce brain inflammation and this most recent study now shows that omega-3 fats improve blood flow to key regions in the brain and improve cognitive performance.

The Lead Author Daniel G. Amen, MD, adds, “This is very important research because it shows a correlation between lower omega-3 fatty acid levels and reduced brain blood flow to regions important for learning, memory, depression and dementia.”

How much omega-3 fat do you need each day to optimize your omega-3 fat status?

The evidence we have so far suggests that the ingestion of 400 mg of omega-3 fat per day, on average, is protective against Alzheimer’s disease. The omega-3 fats of interest are EPA and DHA. Thus, if you took a 1000 mg capsule of fish oil each day and it was standardized to 30% EPA and 20% DHA, it would yield 500 mg of important omega-3 fats.

I’ve included a link to the featured research study in the text below.

References:

1. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/05/170519124034.htm

2. http://www.j-alz.com/content/can-omega-3-help-prevent-alzheimers-disease

Eat Smart, Live Well, Look Great!

Dr. James Meschino

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