Are omega 3 6 9 supplements a worthwhile investment? The supplement manufacturers say that they are providing a natural balance of those three fatty acids. They say that other supplements are less natural and somehow less beneficial. But, the facts are these.
All dietary fats contain a combination of free fatty acids. Typically, there is some degree of saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats. All animal fats contain some cholesterol, too. Vegetable oils do not.
Foods manufactured by man may contain some trans-fatty acids, which are created by partially hydrogenating vegetable oils. These man-made fats raise LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and lower HDL (good) levels, even though they contain no cholesterol.
Fish oil supplements contain a variety of fats, too. The better manufacturers will list omega 3 6 9, as well as other ingredients on the label. If the information is not listed, then you might not be getting as many omega-3s as you think and you might be getting too many of the others.
It is primarily the 3s that are missing from modern-day diets, particularly the popular modern American diet. For the most part, we get enough 6s and 9s. You cannot get a supplement that contains only the 3s, but you can get one that contains a higher concentration of them, relative to the other two. In the better brands, at least half of the fat is omega-3 fat.
The 3s and 6s are essential to the human diet. Man cannot live without them. They are polyunsaturated.
The 9s are not essential. They are monounsaturated, which makes them closer, on a molecular level, to saturated fats, which have been linked to an increased risk of heart disease and various kinds of cancer.
So, omega 3 6 9 supplements may be a worthwhile investment, if the concentration of each is listed, the 3s are high, the 6s are very low and the 9s are not too high. The main benefit of taking a supplement is to help correct the imbalance that exists in many diets; the lack of omega-3s combined with the high concentrations of omega-6s.
This imbalance leads to chronic inflammation throughout the body, which plays a role in heart disease and cancer. Fish oil supplements, which are rich in DHA and EPA, two of the most important omega-3s, may reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.
The advertising claims concerning the ?natural balance? in omega 3 6 9 supplements is nothing more than hype. There is, however, some reason to believe that a supplement containing the natural triglycerides, rather than those that have been molecularly distilled, have more anti-inflammatory activity. The reason for this, though, is unknown.
The only problem with the natural triglycerides is that they may contain a number of impurities, including mercury and PCBs. Before you buy a supplement, you should check to make sure that the manufacturer has the triglycerides evaluated for those toxins, before they try to sell them to you.
So, that?s the facts about omega 3 6 9 supplements. Don?t buy into the hype.