In the media today there is certainly a lot of talk about something called Omega 3. When you start to see a lot of people talking about a product that you may never have heard of, then it spikes our natural curiosity. This is especially true if we happen to find out that this mystery product is supposed to be good for us?
That is always the really big question I find. Is it really good for us, is it just hype, or is it good for us today and not good for us tomorrow? We thought we would take a close look and try separate facts from fiction.
Omega 3 – An Essential Fatty Acid for Men
Well, there are a few different types of Omega fatty acids. The best known is Omega 3 but there is also Omega 6 and 9. We shall look at those later, but for now, let’s try to understand what a fatty acid is. To be honest the name actually sounds like something you would want to run a mile from. The names fatty and acid hardly conjecture the sounds of a healthy lifestyle do they?
Before we look at fatty acids though let me explain the word “essential” because that in itself can be really misleading. When the human body does not naturally produce something, then it is “essential” that we supplement that lack of production by including something in our diet or meal plan. That is why the term essential is used and it is not meant to be something that creates a sense of panic.
These come in three distinct types:
You will be glad to know I will be using abbreviations going forward. The important thing to note here is that fatty acid types of EPA and DHA are the ones with the biggest health benefits for both men and women.
ALA comes from plants and nuts and DHA is what you find in fish and from animals who graze on grass.
Human Body & Fatty Acids
The human body does not naturally produce these, but there is plenty of scientific research that informs us that these essential fatty acids help our health in a number of ways which I have listed below:
- Heart disease prevention
- Relief from Arthritis
- Lowering Cholesterol levels
- Helps treat depression
DHA in particular also helps with fetal and infant health, brain functions and also with cognitive decline. certainly, you can see from this list that the benefits are numerous, and who wouldn’t want to include these as part of a nice healthy diet.
Specific Omega 3 Benefits for Men
The overall health benefits for both men and women are substantial and include the following:
- Heart Disease Risk
- Prostate Cancer
- Lowering Cholesterol
- Balancing the Blood Pressure
- Increasing Libido
- Reducing Depressions
- Helping with Asthma
- Bowel Improvement
- Increased Sperm Count
Which Foods Contain These?
The most obvious one is fish such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, and almost any cold-water fish. if you include seaweeds in your diet this is also a great source.
If hens have been fed with a meal containing fish meal oil, or flax then the eggs produced will also contain Omega 3.
Likewise, any animal fed on grass such as sheep, lambs, cows or goats will also contain Omega 3. Beef is a good example of this and contains Omega 3.
What Oils Contain These?
For those who do not eat a lot of meat or fish, then there are supplements available for you as well. You will find these omega 3s in fish oil, krill oil, and flaxseed oil. Pumpkin seed oil is also very good.
Omega 3 Side Effects for Men
Are there any side effects. There was a link from one study that did make a correlation between taking Omega 3 and an increase in prostate cancer from men. This was one study and it is difficult just from that single study to know if the causes were direct. Many men who participated in that study were obese, many smoked and over 60% drank on a regular basis. Now it would be wrong to dismiss this study out of hand, but it is still difficult to draw scientific direct results from it. Always check with a medical professional before starting Omega 3 in your diet.
The net result for me is that there is overwhelming evidence that states Omega 3 fatty acids are very good for overall male health and well being. It is certainly part of my diet and I do feel better as a result of taking this as part of my daily diet.