Eye health linked to omega fatty acids
Dr. R. Bhargava of the Laser Eye Clinic in Noida, India has explained in a recent publication that the growing use of personal computers has led to an increase in dry eye symptoms in young, middle-aged, and office going individuals. This symptom was mainly observed in elderly women, but it now occurs in young people. The researchers recruited 478 people with dry eye symptoms. All were using computers for at least three hours per day.
Omega 3 fatty acid supplementation significantly reduced dry eye symptoms as measured by several standard eye tests. The results showed 70 percent of patients were totally symptom-free in contrast to 14.9 percent of patients in the placebo group after three months.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Age-related Macular Degeneration
As we age, the blood supply to the eye becomes weaker, macular degeneration is inevitable. Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids support the blood vessels that feed the retina and build the nerve sheath of the optic nerve. Epidemiological studies indicated the potential preventative effects of omega-3.
A study showed that patients who achieved high red blood cell membrane EPA/DHA levels were significantly protected against Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) compared with those with permanently low EPA/DHA levels (omega fatty acids). (NCBI)
Cheap low-quality omega fatty acid supplement brands may actually be more harmful than beneficial
Dr. Steven Masley M.D., the author of 30 Day Heart Tune-Up, warns consumers that most American made fish oils contain rancid fats and are not high-quality products.
Side effects of too much Omega-3s
Omega-3s may also cause blood thinning or excessive bleeding in some people. Thus, if you are having surgery, you should stop taking omega-3 supplements for a few weeks before an operation. Another reason is that high amounts of Vitamin A can be toxic to the body. Some omega-3 supplements (such as cod liver oil) have high amounts of it.
Omega-6s and omega-3s compete for the same enzymes, which convert the fatty acids into their biologically active forms (NCBI, PubMed). Thus, getting omega-3 from food is always a better choice. If you must take Omega fatty acid supplements, 500mg per day is good enough.