Health Benefits

Our bodies do not efficiently produce EPA and DHA, so we have to obtain it through our diet. Seafood is our main source of EPA and DHA but a supplement of marine Omega-3 is a good alternative if you do not eat enough fatty fish. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has made recommendations regarding daily intake of EPA and DHA to help consumers better understand the health benefits of these fatty acids.

Heart health and blood pressure

Omega-3s also have been shown to help maintain healthy blood pressure and healthy triglyceride levels. Given that most people aren’t getting enough omega-3s, it’s important to focus on getting more of these important nutrients. More than 4,000 human studies, the majority on heart health, show benefits of EPA and DHA omega-3s, the kinds found in fatty fish and dietary supplements. 

Consuming recommended doses of EPA and DHA is an easy way to contribute to maintenance of a healthy heart and circulation. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) recommends a daily intake of 250 milligrams of EPA and DHA to contribute to a normal function of the heart, 2 grams EPA and DHA to maintain a normal blood triglyceride level and 3 grams of EPA and DHA to maintain a normal blood pressure.

Prenatal health

Additionally, a recent study found that women taking omega-3 supplements while pregnant had a reduced risk for early preterm birth (less than 34 weeks), preterm birth (between 34-37 weeks) and babies born with low birth weight (less than 5.5 pounds).
The omega-3 DHA is a vital nutrient during pregnancy and lactation, and mothers are the sole source for developing babies. 

EFSA recommend pregnant and lactating women to have a daily intake of 200 mg DHA, in addition to the recommended daily intake of EPA and DHA for adults, i.e. 250 mg EPA and DHA, to contribute to normal development of the brain, eye and vision of the fetus and breastfed infants.

Brain health and development

Two types of cells - neurons and glia cells - are responsible for sending and processing signals so that we can function intellectually, operate the central nerve system and move our bodies. Both cell types are dependent upon flexible membranes where EPA and DHA play important roles. DHA also contributes to effective communication between the vast numbers of neurons.
EFSA recommend a daily intake of 250 mg of DHA to contribute to maintenance of normal brain function. 

Eye health

The retina is the light-sensitive layer of cells in the back of the eye that contributes to create an image of what you see – like film in a camera. The retina has receptors for light and nerve cells that send signals to the brain for interpretation of the light signals.

The relation to DHA is that we find - and the cells need - high concentrations of DHA in the retina for adequate vision in dim light and at night. The highly unsaturated nature of DHA has unique effects on retinal cell membranes allowing them to transmit light signals very quickly. A number of studies have confirmed that DHA contributes to the maintenance of normal vision and EFSA recommend a daily intake of 250 mg of DHA to attain this.

Joint health

Omega-3 – best documented ingredient

The nutrients have been shown to provide benefits for a variety of health outcomes, and more research is continually being published.  The scientific literature describes several conditions where intake of EPA and DHA are positively associated to linked to better health from development of the fetus to adulthood to older ages.

How is your omega-3 intake?
Take quiz!