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Omega-6 vs. Omega-3 Fatty Acid: What's the Difference?

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Omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are essential to the body to maintain certain functions and to aid in keeping you healthy. While both are fatty acids, each one has a different role in keeping your body performing at its absolute best.


Most sources of omega-6 fatty acids can be found in the food you eat in your daily diets, while omega-3 fatty acids may be taken as a supplement. In fact, certain research says that too much omega-6 may lead to or increase the problems of certain medical conditions, along with depression. Your body does not make these fatty acids, which are essential for good health.You must obtain them elsewhere. Omega-6 fatty acid aids in reducing the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy, rheumatoid arthritis, allergies and high blood pressure. It eases the symptoms of menopause, in particular breast pain or tenderness. It is also good for the sufferers of multiple sclerosis, and it also helps those diagnosed with ADHD. Add eczema, menstrual pain and breast cancer to the list of illnesses and diseases that omega-6 is helpful for preventing or treating. A good diet will provide all the omega-6 fatty acids that your body needs. Omega-3 fatty acids, on the other hand must usually be taken as some form of supplement.


Omega-3 fatty acid is found in abundance in fish or fish oils. This essential fatty acid has been found to reduce the incidence of heart disease, as well as a number of other illnesses or conditions. Omega-3 fatty acid plays a crucial role in the function of the brain and in normal growth development. It also stimulates hair and skin growth. A healthy diet of omega-3 fatty acids would include wheat germ, fresh fruits and vegetables, along with fish, olive oil, garlic, flax seed, walnuts and canola oil. All of these are excellent sources of this fatty acid. Omega-3 plays an important role in reducing different types of inflammation, while Omega-6 can often cause the inflammation to become even worse. Omega-3 fatty acids help to reduce blood pressure and high cholesterol. Several other diseases are helped by the addition of an Omega-3 supplement. Arthritis, lupus, osteoporosis, asthma, diabetes, irritable bowel disease, breast cancer and colon cancer are just some in a long list of ailments that can benefit from omega-3 fatty acid.


Infants who do not get enough omega-3 fatty acid during the mother's pregnancy can suffer from nerve or vision problems. Adult deficiencies may include fatigue, poor circulation, depression or mood swings, dry skin and poor memory.


Make sure that you maintain a healthy diet that includes all of the above recommendations. Take fish oil supplements to ensure that your daily omega-3 fatty acid intake is adequate. Try not to eat too much meat, which raises the level of omega-6 in your system and which can lead to other problems. Snack on healthy things such as nuts and fruits for the benefits that the omega-3 fatty acids can provide.

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