Posts Tagged ‘omega fish oil’

Scientific research reveals brain alterations linking omega 3 fish oil deficit with depression

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

The link between deficits of omega-3 poly-unsaturated fatty acids (AGPO-3) and the onset of depressive disorders is not new in the medical field. However, what has not been known until now is the brain mechanism by which diet can condition mental health to a certain extent. Research undertaken by scientists in Bordeaux (France) and at the Faculty of Medicine and Odontology of the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and published in Nature Neuroscience, provides new clues to understanding this phenomenon.

The name of the research work, ‘Omega-3 nutritional deficiencies annul the neuronal functions of the endocannabinoid system’ describes the research findings, endocannabinoid system being linked to the onset of depressive disorders.

According to Doctor Susana Mato, researcher in the Ramón y Cajal programme, attached to the Neurosciences Department of the Faculty of Medicine and Odontology at the UPV/EHU and member of the Neurobiology Group, “we have observed that, in mice subjected to a diet low in omega-3 poly-unsaturated fatty acids, they have lower AGPO-3 brain levels, and this fact is associated with an alteration in the functioning of the endocannabinoid system”. More concretely, the researcher points to the confirmation of “the existence of a deficit in the signalling of the CB1 cannabinoid receptor in the prefrontal cortex of the brain. This protein — the CB1 cannabinoid receptor — has been linked, over the last decade and in various studies, to depressive disorders.”

Doctor Rafael Rodríguez-Puertas, research worker responsible for the Neurochemical and Neurodegeneration team at the Faculty of Medicine and Odontology at the UPV/EHU, points out that “certain forms of synaptic plasticity — a change in the efficiency of neuronal communication — measured by the brain’s endocannabinoid system, disappear specifically from certain zones of the brains of mice with AGPO-3 deficit”.

Despite several example in the scientific literature referring to the existence of a link between the low presence of AGPO-3 in the diet and depressive disorders, Susana Mato recognises that “little more is known about how modern Western diets, poor in AGPO-3, affect brain function and what might be the reason for a greater rate of depression associated with a deficit of these fatty acids”.

As doctor Rodríguez-Puertas points out, “thanks to the results of this research new possibilities are opened up for undertaking deeper research, such as how diet modifies the functioning of the brain in general and the endocannabinoid system in particular, and how this is linked to mental disorders”.

It also, “reinforces the idea that manipulating the endocannabinoid system can be useful for the treatment of depressive disorders, although the data we have up to now is very green for us to say what would be the ideal way to do so”, pointed out Dr Mato.

Collaboration amongst European researchers

The research work started with two French teams located in Bordeaux and led respectively by doctors Olivier J Manzoni and Sophie Layé. They have been working for a number of years with mice which show low levels of AGPO-3 in their brain, due to a low diet in these fatty acids.

“Dr Manzoni’s team discovered that the synaptic plasticity of the neuronal connections, which is mediated by endocannabinoids, disappears in these animals”, pointed out Dr S. Mato. To this end, in 2008, they made contact with researchers at the Faculty of Medicine at the UPV/EHU in order to obtain their collaboration in undertaking new research in order to identify possible change sin the expression and activity of the cannabinoid receptors.

In fact, in order to draw conclusions from the study, it has been necessary to employ a large number of research techniques, amongst which were “the analysis of the brain’s fatty acids, electrophysiology, autoradiography of receptors, the western blot (for quantification of proteins), the determination of levels of endocannabinoids and behaviour tests”, listed Doctor Rodríguez-Puertas. “In fact”, continued the researcher, “in our research team we are experts in the autoradiography of receptors technique and in anatomically identifying the activation of the receptors of the endocannabinoid system”.

Side Effects Fish Oil

Friday, April 15th, 2011

People are often concerned about the side effects of fish oil . As with any supplement there is always the chance of suffering side effects however the best way to avoid side effects with fish oil is very simple.

Buy a good quality fish oil supplement that is highly purified , this should mean that you avoid the fishy aftertaste and gastric / stomach upset that can be linked with lower grade fish oil . Unfortunately it isnt always clear how pure a product is, but a good guideline is to look at the omega3 content per fish oil supplement and then see what the level of the active ingredients EPA and DHA are in percentage to the total omega 3 fish oil. For example a product may detail it is 1000mg omega 3 fish oil however the level of  active ingredients EPA and DHA may only be 300mg – so less than a 1/3 of the  total oil contains the important EPA /DHA  so this is clearly a low concentration oil which has not been refined to the extent of a high quality oil such as takeomega 3 fish oil . A good quality fish oil supplement will detail the exact levels of EPA and DHA per capsule . Take Omega 3 fish oil has per fish oil supplement 750mg EPA and 50mg DHA and is the highest concentration available of any fish oil supplement at 85% concentration.

Do you know where the fish oil has been sourced from ?  What is the testing process throughout manufacturing process ? Where is the country of origin ? All of these should be considered as it is an indication of the purity of the fish oil , and the purity of the fish oil could be critical in avoiding stomach upset , nausea, gastric upset. Take Omega 3 fish oil is uniquely made from fish sourced from sustainable fish stocks from the purest waters of Chile – only sardines and anchovies are used in our fish oil. The refining process takes 10 weeks and is uniquely carried out in only one of two sites globally licensed by MHRA (Medical Health and Regulatory Authority) as a result Take Omega 3 is the highest concentration available . So the fish oil side effects that you may experience with other less refined fish oils due to lack of  purity and low concentration dont occur.

As with any supplement fish oil isnt any different and you should stick to the recommended dosage – we recommend 1 fish oil supplement per day  as that delivers 750mg EPA and 50mg DHA- obviously other  fish oil supplement brands have far lower concentrations and therefore they may recommend you  take multiple capsules. The more low grade omega 3 fish oil  capsules you take the more chance you are likely to have side effects fish oil .

If  you take blood thinners such as warfarin you should consult your Doctor  as omega 3 does have a blood thinning effect . Unlike St Johns Wort omega 3 fish oil does not interact in a negative way with any other prescription medicine so it is safe though you should always advise your GP that you are taking it as with any other vitamin / mineral supplement.

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