Q:

What do Omega-3 fatty acids do for the brain and body?

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Quick Answer

Omega-3 fatty acids aid in brain function and reduce inflammation throughout the brain and body, explains Healthline. These nutrients also help regulate multiple bodily functions, such as blood clotting. The body does not make omega-3 fatty acids, so they must be consumed through food.

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Full Answer

Because of their ability to lower triglyceride levels, blood pressure and cholesterol, omega-3 fatty acids are considered to be highly beneficial when it comes to heart health, notes MedlinePlus. The nutrients may also reduce a person's risks of developing arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, ulcerative colitis and some forms of cancer. Researchers have also found that people from cultures that consume high levels of omega-3 fatty acids experience fewer instances of depression, and that fish oil, which contains omega-3 acids, has the ability to enhance the effectiveness of antidepressant medication, according to WebMD.

Omega-3 fatty acids are available in supplement form, and individuals can also obtain them by eating a variety of different foods. Flaxseed oil is a popular supplement that's high in omega-3 fatty acids. Various cold-water fish, including salmon, mackerel and tuna, are also high in omega-3s, explains MedlinePlus. Dark, leafy green vegetables are also high in these nutrients, and the amount of omega-3 acids available in plant-based foods is much higher than the amount available in fish oils, according to WebMD.

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