Know more about the importance of omega 6, main sources, functions in the organism and health benefits.
What is Omega-6:
Omega 6 are fatty acids extremely important for the good operation of the human organism. Omega 6, as well as Omega 3, is the acquaintances’ good fats part. They are not produced by the organism and, therefore, they should be acquired through the ingestion certain foods.
Omega-6 fatty acids, like omega-3s, are essential fatty acids that can only be provided to us through food and supplements.
Our body cannot produce Omega-6, yet these fatty acids are very important to the brain to help strengthen its vital function through healthy growth and development.
Both omega 3 and 6, are polyunsaturated fatty acids that differ from each other in their chemical structure, Omega-3 sources are more scarce compared to omega-6, being animal mainly from the fat of cold water fish such as salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel, black cod, and bluefish and vegetarian from walnuts and flaxseeds.
Omega-6 sources are vast and can be found on numerous types of food in modern diets, typical urban diet tends to contain significantly more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids, particularly because it is in a lot of unhealthy processed foods, such as salad dressings, potato chips, pizza, some pasta dishes and processed meats like sausage and ham.
- hulled sesame seeds
- durum wheat
- whole-grain breads
- most vegetable oils
- grape seed oil
- evening primrose oil
- borage oil
- blackcurrant seed oil
- flax/linseed oil
- rapeseed or canola oil
- hemp oil
- soybean oil
- cottonseed oil
- sunflower seed oil
- corn oil
- safflower oil
- pumpkin seeds
The human body constructs hormones from omega 6 fatty acids. These hormones are derived from the two classes of essential fatty acids and have opposite effects.
Those from omega-6 fatty acids tend to increase inflammation (an important component of the immune response), blood clotting, and cell proliferation, while those from omega-3 fatty acids decrease those functions. Both families of hormones must be in balance to maintain optimum health, so there are some omega-6 benefits.
Omega-6 can cause dangerous inflammation
Arachidonic acid (AA) is not only the precursor for PGE2, but also for similar compounds called leukotrienes. These leukotrienes are up to10,000 times more inflammatory than PGE2, but they cause no pain. The inflammation in obesity, diabetes, and coronary heart disease are examples of painless inflammation that in most cased are caused by the food source of omega-6.