Science-based benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids
Since fatty acids have a specific taste, they weren't very popular in the past. However, now there are a lot of manufacturers producing Omega-3 in the form of capsules with a fruit taste. So it's the very time to talk about the benefits of this supplement.
Omega-3 is a group of unsaturated fatty acids, which includes 11 polyunsaturated fatty acids, 3 of which (α-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)) are essential (they are not reproduced in the body in the necessary volume, and with their deficiency there are various biochemical and physiological disorders).
It is impossible to achieve the desired results in sports without sufficient intake of Omega-3 fatty acids, whether it is weight loss, muscle gain or increase in strength. With a lack of essential fatty acids, your achievements will always be lower than they could be.
On September 8, 2004, U.S. The Food and Drug Administration officially recognized the effectiveness of omega-3 fatty acids, and stated that "inconclusive but well-founded studies show that the consumption of EPA and DHA fatty acids reduces the risk of coronary heart disease."
At present, almost all official healthcare institutions agree with the beneficial properties of omega-3 fatty acids.
A large number of supplements and sports nutrition based on omega-3 began to emerge in connection with the full recognition of the importance of omega-3 fatty acids for health.
Omega-3 has a wide range of positive effects that are of key importance in bodybuilding. Here is a list of the main ones:
- Increase metabolic rate.
- Accelerate the growth of lean muscle mass and a decrease in body fat. Can be used for weight loss, and to gain weight.
- Increased insulin sensitivity by slowing the movement of food through the gastrointestinal tract. Thus, carbohydrates are absorbed more slowly without creating concentration peaks that cause desensitization of insulin islets.
- Improving the rheological properties of blood by reducing the viscosity, resulting in reduced blood pressure, decreases the risk of cardiovascular diseases, the formation of blood clots, strokes and heart attacks.
- Raises the general tone, increases stamina and neuro-muscular function. A study conducted in 2015 demonstrated an improvement in all of these qualities in men during workouts compared to the placebo control group that used olive oil.
- They are precursors of the anti-inflammatory prostaglandins E3, and also inhibit the synthesis of pro-inflammatory prostaglandins E2, which are formed from omega-6. E3 prostaglandins reduce pain and inflammatory processes that always accompany intense exercise, while E2 prostaglandins have the opposite effect and are able to suppress lipolysis. Thus, the destruction of muscle tissue after exercise is reduced, the recovery time is shortened and fat utilization increases.
- Omega-3 fatty acids prevent the destruction of cartilage in the joints. Several studies have noted that omega-3 relieves pain in diseases of the joints, improves their mobility and suppresses inflammatory processes.
- Improve brain function, raise mood. The brain substance is 60% fat and especially needs Omega-3 fatty acids in order to function properly. A long-term study of the effect of omega-3 fatty acids on the brain has proved their possible use even as prevention of schizophrenia in adolescents.
- Make the skin softer and cleaner.
- A healthy source of energy that does not create the risk of increasing fat mass.
- Strengthen the production of hormones, including the most important in bodybuilding testosterone.
- Suppress the release of the catabolic hormone cortisol.
Polyunsaturated fatty acids of the Omega-3 series are also necessary in the following conditions: functional disorders of the central nervous system, accompanied by a decrease in the level of mental energy and intellectual functions, chronic fatigue, rehabilitation after acute disorders of cerebral circulation; rehabilitation after heart attack, angiopathy; osteomyelitis, bone fractures, trophic ulcers; autoimmune diseases; glomerulonephritis; pregnancy; skin diseases, cosmetic programs, cancer prevention, etc.
Fish oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids can also help increase muscle. According to a study published in the journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition in 2010, an increase in muscle mass was observed after six weeks of taking fish oil drugs (3-4 grams per day). The results showed that fish oil has a positive effect on protein synthesis in muscle cells, and an increase in the cells themselves was also observed.