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By Julia Haimovich, Accredited Practicing Dietitian.

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Omega Fats: Key to Brain Health.

Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids play a crucial role in maintaining brain health and its

According to studies published in journals such as the “Journal of Neuroscience”
and “Nutritional Neuroscience,” regular consumption of omega-3 fatty acids is associated
with improved memory, attention, and overall cognitive functions. Omega-3 fatty
, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), are key
building blocks of brain cells. They contribute to strengthening cell membranes and reducing
inflammation, which is especially important for protecting neurons from damage. 1

Research also shows that omega-3 fatty acids can help combat depression and anxiety.
Mechanisms behind this include enhancing signal transmission between neurons and
reducing stress levels. 2

Unbalanced intake of omega-6 fatty acids, often from excessive consumption of vegetable
oils, can lead to inflammatory processes in the body, which, in turn, can negatively impact
brain health. Therefore, it’s important to maintain a balance between omega-3 and omega-6
fatty acid consumption. 3

According to recommendations from the American Dietetic Association, adults are advised to
consume at least 250-500 mg of EPA and DHA per day to maintain brain and heart health.
These acids can be obtained from fish oil, flaxseed oil, walnuts, and other sources. 4

In conclusion, regular consumption of omega-3 fatty acids has a proven positive impact on
brain health, supporting its functions and protecting against various neurological disorders.
Balancing the consumption of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids is key to maintaining
optimal brain health throughout life.


  1. Swanson D., Block R., Mousa S. A. Omega-3 Fatty Acids EPA and DHA: Health Benefits
    Throughout Life. Advances in Nutrition. 2012;3(1):1-7. doi:10.3945/an.111.000893
  2. Gómez-Pinilla F. Brain foods: the effects of nutrients on brain function. Nature Reviews
    Neuroscience. 2008;9(7):568-578. doi:10.1038/nrn2421
  3. Simopoulos A. P. The importance of the omega-6/omega-3 fatty acid ratio in
    cardiovascular disease and other chronic diseases. Experimental Biology and Medicine.
    2008;233(6):674-688. doi:10.3181/0711-MR-311
  4. American Heart Association. Fish and Omega-3 Fatty
    Acids. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/eat-smart/fats/fish-and-omega-
    3-fatty-acids. Accessed April 14, 2024.
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