Can Omega 3 Fatty Acids Affect Your Mood?
Omega 3 fatty acids have been demonstrated to significantly influence the nervous system and affect brain structures.
Can omega 3 fat also impact the way you feel emotionally?
This was evaluated in young adults with depressive symptoms by giving them 1.4 g of EPA and DHA, the active ingredients of omega 3 fat, or a placebo (Ginty AT, Conclin SM, 2015).
The participants took the omega 3 fatty acids for 21 days, and the results showed a significant difference between the treatment group and the placebo group.
67% of the participant taking the omega 3 fatty acids no longer met the criteria for being depressed, while only 20% in the placebo group were no longer depressed.
When medical students were given either 2085 mg of EPA and 348 mg of DHA or a placebo, the ones who received the omega 3 fatty acids experienced a 20% reduction in anxiety symptoms and a 14% reduction in IL-6 and TNF-alpha, both markers of inflammation (Kiecolt-Glaser JK et.al., 2011).
The fatty acid composition of the red blood cells in patients with recurrent major depression was found to be significantly lower in the patients compared to the control group without depression ( Assies J, et.al., 2010).
According to these studies, just by taking some capsules of a high-quality omega 3 fish oil daily, you should see a positive effect on your mood.
Assies J, Pouwer F, Lok A, Mocking RJ, Bockting CL, Visser I, Abeling NG, Duran M, Schene AH Plasma and erythrocyte fatty acid patterns in patients with recurrent depression: a matched case-control study. PLoS One. 2010 May 14;5(5):e10635.
Ginty AT, Conklin SM. Short-term supplementation of acute long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids may alter depression status and decrease symptomology among young adults with depression: A preliminary randomized and placebo controlled trial.
Psychiatry Res. 2015 Sep 30;229(1-2):485-9.
Kiecolt-Glaser JK, Belury MA, Andridge R, Malarkey WB, Glaser R. Omega-3 supplementation lowers inflammation and anxiety in medical students: a randomized controlled trial. Brain Behav Immun. 2011 Nov;25(8):1725-34.
The anti-inflammatory effects of Omega 3 fatty acids are well known. Most people that eat a western diet can benefit from increasing the intake of Omega 3 fatty acid since their diet usually contains too much Omega 6 from vegetable oils and saturated fat from dairy and other animal sources