Omega-3 fatty acids are extremely essential for various body functions. The inflammation, heart health, and even mental health benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids have all been well researched.
Researchers have been examining the role of omega-3 on depression, as well as other mental health maladies, for over ten years. Although the research is still in its early stages, and more work must be done before conclusions can be drawn, the results are encouraging. Most research suggests that omega-3 fatty acids may be incredibly beneficial in the treatment of depression.
The Impact of Omega 3 Fatty Acids and Fish Oil on Depression
There are 3 main types of omega-3s, and two of these are in fish oil, they are eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid. Fish oil can be obtained by taking supplements or simply having fish included in your diet.
Alpha-linolenic acid, a third omega-3 fatty acid, can be found in plants such as chia, walnuts, and flax. While the body needs all three omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acid appear to offer some distinct health benefits.
Fish oil and omega-3 fatty acids, when consumed as part of a healthy diet, have been proven to treat, or in most cases, prevent various health problems, such as high cholesterol, rheumatoid arthritis, and heart disease. Other health conditions are being studied, and it appears that omega-3 and fish oil may help them as well.
Omega-3s fatty acids are essential for the proper functioning of the brain. Several studies claim that deficiency in omega-3s is linked to several mental health issues, such as depression, dementia, and bipolar. This is the hypothesis on which researchers are basing their research, for the potential benefits of omega-3 and fish oil in the treatment and prevention of depression and other mental health conditions it has been linked with.
According to Harvard Health Publishing, evidence suggests that omega-3s can go through the cell membranes of brain cells and interact with molecules responsible for regulating one’s mood. One idea proposes that the anti-inflammatory qualities of omega-3 fatty acids present in fish oil can assist in balancing one’s mood.