Omega-3 fatty acids best from food

July 10, 2008 at 11:52 PM

LOS ANGELES, July 10 (UPI) -- A researcher at the University of California, Los Angeles, says foods can be the best way to obtain omega-3 fatty acids.

Fernando Gomez-Pinilla suggests foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids -- such as salmon, walnuts and kiwi fruit -- can have additional nutrients not found in omega-3 supplements.

Gomez-Pinilla says scientists are learning which omega-3 fatty acids seem to be especially important.

One fatty acid -- docosahexaenoic acid, or DHA -- reduces oxidative stress and enhances synaptic plasticity and learning and memory. DHA is the most abundant omega-3 fatty acid in cell membranes in the brain.

"The brain and the body are deficient in the machinery to make DHA; it has to come through our diet," Gomez-Pinilla says in a statement. "Dietary deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids in humans has been associated with increased risk of several mental disorders, including attention-deficit disorder, dyslexia, dementia, depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia."

Gomez-Pinilla, who studies the effects of food, exercise and sleep on the brain, says omega-3 fatty acids are essential and he eats salmon three times a week.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
Multiple attacks prompt Jerusalem violence; gun restrictions could ease
Genetic changes could make pig organs usable for human transplant
Five Democratic presidential candidates meet in Las Vegas for first debate
Confederate flag group charged with terrorist threats
Report: MH17 downed by Russian-made missile