by Medindia Content Team on  March 4, 2006 at 8:17 PM Diet & Nutrition News
Much more to what meets the eye in Omega 3 fatty acids
In a new study on Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids it has been revealed that it has many more influences than just heart health benefits.

They influence mood, personality and behavior too.

These results are from a study presented by University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine researchers at the 64th Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society in Denver.

The study comprised 106 healthy volunteers. The researchers found that participants who had lower blood levels of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids were more likely to report mild or moderate symptoms of depression, a more negative outlook and be more impulsive. Conversely, those with higher blood levels of omega-3s were found to be more agreeable.

In the words of Sarah Conklin, Ph.D., a postdoctoral scholar with the Cardiovascular Behavioral Medicine Program in the department of psychiatry at the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Medicine," A number of previous studies have linked low levels of omega-3 to clinically significant conditions such as major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, substance abuse and attention deficit disorder. However, few studies have shown that these relationships also occur in healthy adults. This study opens the door for future research looking at what effect increasing omega-3 intake, whether by eating omega-3 rich foods like salmon, or taking fish-oil supplements, has on people's mood."

While the cardiovascular benefit of increasing omega-3 intake is well recognized, relatively little is known of the potential mental health effects among the general public. Comparisons were made by analyzing levels of omega-3 fatty acids in participants' blood and comparing that data to the participants' scores on three accepted tests for depression, impulsiveness and personality.

So this study tells us much more about omega 3 fatty acids than meets the eye!

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