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Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil increase the burning of fat and reduce obesity in mice
Thursday, September 16, 2010 6:18 am Email this article
Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA found in fish oil increase the burning of body fat and reduce obesity in mice according to a study from the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. SATURATED VS UNSATURATED FAT
Saturated fat more fattening than polyunsaturated fat
The authors note that previous research has found that saturated fat, that is fat this is hard at room temperature such as is found in meat or butter, increases body fat more than polyunsaturated fat, that is fat that is liquid at room temperature such as vegetable oil.
“Studies in rodents have demonstrated that saturated fats facilitate adipose tissue deposition more effectively than polyunsaturated fatty acids,” the author noted.
Omega-3’s from fish oil more potent than omega-3’s from plants
Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA found in fish oil are even more potent at reducing body fat than omega-3’s found in certain plant oils such as flax seed oil according to the authors.
“[Omega-3] polyunsaturated fatty acids [EPA and DHA], which are abundant in marine fish oil, are more potent in reducing adiposity than [Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids] from plants, such as alpha-linolenic acid [found abudantly in green leafy vegetables and flax seed oil],” the authors stated.
DHA particularly important
“The intake of DHA appears to be particularly important,” the authors point out.
Fish oil more effective than plant oils at raising DHA
Alpha-linolenic acid found in plant oils can be converted in the body to EPA and DHA, however, the body is not very efficient at doing this according to the paper. Therefore, it is more effective to take fish oil as a source of DHA than it is to consume plant oils and rely on the body to convert them to DHA.
“In mammals, [alpha-linolenic acid] is a precursor of EPA and DHA, but is rapidly oxidised in the organism and its conversion to EPA and DHA is quite inefficient,” according to the authors.
“Hence, dietary fish oil supplement is a more effective source of tissue DHA than [alpha-linolenic acid found in plant oils],” the authors continued.
FISH OIL AND BODY FAT
Fish oil may reduce body fat
The research suggests that fish oil may decrease body fat in humans the paper notes.
“Also in humans, dietary fish oil may decrease body fat content,” the authors stated.
Fish oil increases fat oxidation, increases thermogenesis and decreases creation of fat
This effect is not due to a decrease in calorie consumption, according to the authors, but rather due to an increase in fat oxidation—the burning of body fat—, a decrease in lipogenesis, that is the conversion of carbohydrates to fat, and an increase in thermogenesis, that is the burning of fat for heat.
Note: A previoius study found that fish oil reduced the accumlation of body fat in mice.
Note: Another study found that fish eaters weighed 7 pounds less than meat eaters.
FISH OIL’S HEALTH BENEFITS
Fish oil lowers triglycerides, protects against heart disease and improves insulin resistance
“Furthermore, EPA and DHA [lower triglycerides], exert prophylactic effects on cardiovascular disease [that is, protect against heart disease] and may improve insulin sensitivity,” the authors continued.
Note: A previoius study found that men who ate 8 ounces of fish a week were 44 percent less likely to die of a heart attack than men who ate no fish.
Eat more fish and green leafy vegetables, and less corn oil and soy bean oil
“Therefore, current dietary recommendations favour a substantial decrease in the [ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3 fatty acids,” the authors noted.
DR. SIMOPOLOUS’S RECOMMENDATIONS
Dr. Simpolous noted the same thing
Note: The brillant Artemis Simopolous, MD noted the same things and made the same recommendation in her interview.
( I am a big fan of Dr. Simopolous. She is a no-nonsense, honest, hard working researcher who does great work. I am constantly impressed by the work that she does to educate the world about importance of omega-3 fatty acids.)
Ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 has changed from 1-to-1 to 20-to-1
Note: Dr. Simopolous noted that humans used to eat a diet that had about an equal amount of omega-3 fatty acids from fish and green leafy vegetables as we did omega-6 fatty acids found abundantly in things like corn oil and soy bean oil. That means the ratio was about 1-to-1.
Ratio today way out of balance at about 20-to-1
However, today we consume a diet that contains about 20 times as much omega-6 fatty acids from things like corn oil and soy bean oil as omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil and green leafy vegetables.
Too much omega-6 and too little omega-3 cause inflammation and insulin resistance
This imbalance, Dr. Simopolous points out, has negative consequences on health, causing inflammation and insulin resistance.
When ratio exceeds 4-to-1, insulin resistance and diabetes increase
Dr. Simopolous notes that when the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 exceeds 4-to-1, there is an increase in insulin resistance and an increase in diabetes.
4 to 10 fish oil capsules per day
Dr. Simopolous recommends a combined total of 1 to 3 grams (1,000 to 3,000 mg) of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids per day. This is 4 to 10 omega-3 fish oil capsules per day. Each capsule contains 1,000 mg of fish oil with 180 mg of EPA and 120 mg of DHA.
WHERE TO BUY
Sam’s Club sells 300 fish oil capsules for $8
The cheapest source of omega-3 fish oil capsules that I have seen is at Sam’s Club, the warehouse store owned by Walmart. They sell 300 softgel capsules for about $8. This is half the price of the cheapest fish oil capsules that I could find at the local health food store. At this price, taking 4 capsules per day costs $3.20 per month, or taking 10 capsules per day costs $8 per month.
I consider it cheap insurance.
Flachs P, Horakova O, Brauner P, Rossmeisl M, Pecina P, Franssen-Van Hal N, Ruzickova J, Sponarova J, Drahota Z, Vlcek C, Keijer J, Houstek J, Kopecky J. Polyunsaturated fatty acids of marine origin upregulate mitochondrial biogenesis and induce beta-oxidation in white fat. Diabetologia. 2005 Oct 5.
Department of Adipose Tissue Biology
Institute of Physiology
Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
142 20, Prague, Czech Republic
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