Posted on: 31.08.2022 Posted by: Drlark Comments: 0

October 10, 2003



Fatty Acids (EFAs)

Essential fatty acids (EFAs), including omega

3 (linolenic) and omega 6 (linoleic),

must be obtained from our diet or nutrients because our bodies don’t

make them. They’re important for the production of series 1 and

3 prostaglandins, potent hormone-like substances with a wide

range of health benefits. Prostaglandins are both inflammatory

in nature (playing a role in menstrual cramps, labor and headaches,

for instance), and anti-inflammatory, helping regulate blood

pressure, the breakdown of fat, or cholesterol, in our blood, heart

rate, blood clotting, and our immune system’s response to injury

and infection. They help reduce fatigue by decreasing inflammation

and boosting immune function, thus combating candida infections,

allergies and chronic fatigue syndrome).

The production of prostaglandins shifts depending on the level and

type of fatty acids in your body. Too much of one type of fatty

acid, such as arachidonic acid, is associated with certain chronic

diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and atherosclerosis. Too low

a level of the omega-3 fatty acid DHA, however, is associated with

depression and other chronic health conditions.

The typical American diet is high in arachidonic acid, which is

found in red meat and dairy products, and which leads to inflammation

and tissue damage. In addition, we do not have a proper balance

between two potentially beneficial fatty acids, omega-6 fatty acids

found in vegetable oils and omega-3 fatty acids which are found

in cold-water fish and certain plant foods like flaxseeds, pumpkin

seeds and soy.

The goal is to balance your omega 6 and omega 3 fatty acid

intake by increasing the amount of omega-3 rich foods you eat, such

as cold water fish, and decreasing the amount of omega-6 rich foods,

such as those containing vegetable oils. Today, because we consume

so many vegetable-based oils and so little fish, the balance is

closer to 20:1 or 30:1. The ideal balance is 1:1.

Good to know: If you’re increasing your

overall intake of essential fatty acids, you should also increase

the amount of vitamin

E you take to prevent the production of free


Best source of EFAs: Cold-pressed flaxseed

oil (1-2 tbsp daily) or ground flaxseed (4-6 tbsp daily)

To learn more on Essential Fatty Acids, read on:

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-6 Fatty Acids

For more on nutrients, read




Antioxidants and free radicals



Leave a Comment