We all know that air pollution is harmful, but did you know that it can result in a smaller brain?
The researchers in the following study investigated the toxic effects of air pollution on the brain
in 1,315 women aged 65 to 80 years which were free of dementia at the start of the study
(Cheng C, et al., 2020).
They also investigated if omega 3 fatty acids would make a difference.
The participants had MRIs and their red blood cell’s omega 3 fatty acid levels measured.
The researchers found that the participants with higher levels of red blood cell omega 3
fatty acid content had significantly greater volumes of white matter and hippocampus
(areas in the brain).
It was the amount of EPA and DHA, the active ingredients of omega 3 fat that was important.
EPA and DHA are the omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oil. We can get omega 3 fat from flax
seeds, but the omega 3 fat from plants has to be converted to EPA and DHA in the body, and
the conversion rate is not very high. It’s an inefficient process with several individual variations.
If you want to be sure to get the protection of omega 3 fatty acids, you should take a high quality
fish oil with high amounts of EPA and DHA.
Cheng Chen, Pengcheng Xun, Joel D Kaufman, Kathleen M Hayden, Mark A Espeland, Eric A
Whitsel, Marc L Serre, William Vizuete, Tonya Orchard, William S Harris, Xinhui Wang, Helena
C Chui, Jiu-Chiuan Chen, Ka He, Erythrocyte omega-3 index, ambient fine particle exposure and brain aging,Neurology. 2020 Jul 15;10.