Omega 3 Fat is Good for Your Heart and for Your Brain
Scandinavian fishermen are a healthy bunch. It had long been known that they live longer and have much less heart and blood-pressure related diseases than their European counterparts.
Their diet of cold-water fish, while not known for variety or sophistication, had been suspected to fortify their health. Now the scientific research gives additional credit to this claim.
Eating fish high in fats like sardines and salmon might help to prevent Alzheimer's disease. Such fish contains Omega 3 fatty acids, and those acids prevent build-up of amyloid in a brain. Those are results of the research study published in the Journal of Neuroscience.
In this study, researchers from the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center at UCLA observed two groups of older mice that had been genetically engineered to develop Alzheimer's disease. They fed one group food that was fortified with docosahexenoic acid (DHA), the Omega-3 fatty acid found in several types of cold-water fish, and they fed the other group a diet low in DHA.
After five months, the brains of mice who were fed the DHA-rich diet had 70 percent less build-up of amyloid, a waxy deposit of protein and polysaccharides in the brain associated with Alzheimer's. More work is needed to determine if Omega-3 fatty acids can prevent a similar build-up in human brains.
The scientists are very optimistic on this subject. Their research had shown that eating Omega-3 fatty acids also has protective effect on human hearts tissues.
While the research is still in its preliminary stages, FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has already decided to allow the following qualified health claim on foods containing Omega-3 acids: "Supportive but not conclusive research shows that consumption of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease."
What does it mean to you? It is well known that the damages to your heart and brain tissues don't start in the advanced age. They are built up slowly over many years. So the sooner you start changing your diet away from those fat read meats, the better health you will enjoy in your later years.
There is something else we can learn from those Scandinavian fishermen - they seldom cook their fat fish over high temperatures. They learned from a long experience that a high-temperature cooking destroys many valuable nutrients.
They also developed many ingenuous techniques for cold-smoking their fish. This is a process, in which fish is being salted first, and then subjected to a very low heat over extended period of time. If you are feeling adventurous, you can learn to do the same. The taste is delicious.