Omega 101: The Plain Facts About Fatty Acids

Most of us in the health-conscious community know it's essential to get our omega essential fatty acids. But, let's face it. Sometimes, it's a little hard to understand which ones we should look for, and what they do.

Going online to research the functions and benefits of essential fatty acids can lead to a lot of "sciencey" talk that doesn't spell things out plainly. So, we're going to cover the plain facts about the four best essential fatty acids you'll need most to support your healthy lifestyle.

EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid)

One of the most well-known essential fatty acids happens to be EPA, which is short for Eicosapentaenoic Acid. Try saying that three times fast!

EPA is an Omega-3 most commonly found in seafood such as tuna, trout, salmon, cod, sardines, and select shellfish. That's why most omega supplements in the market are fish-derived. But, if you need your EPA fish-free, marine algae supplements are just as good, if not better!

When it comes to benefits, EPA is excellent for supporting cardiovascular function, joint health, mood state, and inflammatory response. Plus, EPA's ability to help with menopausal challenges make it a must-have for women's wellness. 

DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid)

Speaking of popular Omega-3 fatty acids, Docosahexaenoic Acid (or DHA) is just as big of a deal as its EPA sibling. Here's the gist.

Just like EPA, DHA can also be found in many of your favorite kinds of seafood, plus algae. Regarding benefits, DHA shares even more things in common with EPA, given that it provides supreme joint and cardiovascular support as well.

That said, DHA does have a few benefit-related tricks up its sleeve, though. In particular, DHA supports brain function, eye health, nervous system activity, skin health, and immune system function. 

GLA (Gamma-Linolenic Acid)

For as beneficial as EPA and DHA truly are... are those fatty acids fit for a king?

Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA) is an Omega-6 fatty acid that has been used in folk medicine for hundreds of years when it was discovered in evening primrose. Primrose's GLA contents provided so many incredible benefits that it was dubbed as "the king's cure-all" in Europe! Pretty cool, right?

These days, you can find GLA in many vegetable oils, as well as oats, spirulina, and hemp seeds. As for benefits, GLA has them in spades. GLA promotes healthy eyes, mobility, skin elasticity, weight management, and healthy cellular inflammatory response. 

SDA (Stearidonic Acid)

Remember all of the awesome benefits we highlighted about EPA? Well, depending on how you're getting your omegas, you might have this fatty acid to thank for it.

Stearidonic Acid (or SDA) is a long-chain Omega-3 fatty acid that can be found in spirulina, hemp, echium, blackcurrant, and ahiflower oil. 

What makes this fatty acid unique is, when consumed in SDA-rich foods or natural sources, it converts directly to EPA to provide you with the joint, cardiovascular, mood/cognitive, and immune benefits we mentioned earlier.

As a result, this SDA-to-EPA conversion means that you have even more dietary options at your disposal to get the EPA your body needs -- further proving that fish-derived omegas aren't the end-all, be-all of fatty acid uptake. To learn more about the disadvantages of fish oil omega products, be sure to check out this article for more information!

You can also reach out to us directly, too. If you have any questions or comments for us about fatty acids or fish-free omega supplements, feel free to tell us below. Or, you can reach out to us directly at (800) 940-1972 or via email at Support@ZenwiseHealth.com.


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