Consuming omega 3 fats and oily fish isn't just good for heart health. Elderly people are mostly susceptible to geriatric diseases such as muscle degeneration and high eye pressure, while omega-3 fatty acids help to drain the proper intraocular fluid from the eyes, thus benefiting the overall eye care. Recently, many studies support the use of bioavailable variants of omega-3 fatty acids to prevent dry eye discomfort.
What are Omega-3 fatty acids?
Omega-3 fatty acids refer to a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are present in every cell of the body.
Notably, the omega 3's consist of 3 different types, namely:
ALA (alpha-linolenic acid),
2.EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid)
3.DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).
Unfortunately, the human body cannot produce these essential nutrients on its own. So we have to depend on a constant supply of food. In fact, the American Heart Association recommends that all adults eat fish at least twice a week, especially oily fish such as sardines, salmon, and mackerel, to maintain healthy levels of omega-3s. In addition, the biological functions of the cardiovascular system, immune system, and nervous system require Omega 3, which cannot be overemphasized. Because of this, residents of the Mediterranean, Greenland, and Japan, who were able to eat more oily fish, had lower rates of cardiovascular problems than US and UK residents who ate more meat and processed foods.
By the way, eating oily fish is not limited to omega 3 fats. These foods are rich in vitamins A, D, B, calcium and other minerals. For example, vitamin A helps the cornea, the anatomical layer on the outer eye, to remain transparent, and some studies have shown that vitamin A may reduce the risk of lens degeneration.
OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS AND EYE CARE: WHAT RESEARCH HAS TO SAY!
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (AJCN) notes that sources of omega-3 fatty acids rich in EPA and DHA are good for eye health. For example, DHA may promote healthy retinal function. It occurs naturally in the retina and promotes macular health, maintaining visual clarity.
DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids are also found in mother's milk and are therefore found in most infant formulas. And for good reason. Omega-3 fatty acids can enhance your baby's eyesight and promote their development. Pediatric research done by the Harvard School of Public Health reflects this fact. Studies have shown that infants fed formula with DHA have better visual development at 2-4 months of age than infants fed formula with no or less DHA.
Adults may benefit from better vision relief when taking omega-3 fatty acids. Studies have shown that omega 3 can effectively relieve certain eye discomfort problems. The results showed that taking 560 mg DHA and 1680 mg EPA daily, tear osmolarity, omega-3 index, tear breakup time and other eye symptoms returned to normal. Another study used mice to induce dry eye. Studies have shown that administration of omega-3 fatty acids in tropical regions can significantly reduce dry eye symptoms in rodents. In addition, these essential fatty acids properly drain eye fluid from the eye, making it an effective way to relieve high eye pressure.
What are the sources of omega-3 fatty acids?
Oily fish is the best source of omega-3. It is better to eat fresh food than canned or frozen food. But if you're eating farmed fish, make sure it's organic. Oily fish include anchovies, potbelly, mackerel, salmon, sardines, swordfish, and more. It is recommended to eat fish twice a week, or take a daily supplement.
Plant sources of Omega 3s include flaxseed oil, walnuts, soybeans, pumpkin, krill and algae oils. Omega 3s are also found in nuts such as walnuts, pecans and hazelnuts. In addition to foods fortified with omega 3 fats such as butter, you can also consume soybeans and soy products as a reliable source of essential fatty acids.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Taking Supplements
In the absence of fresh food sources of omega 3s, taking supplements is a viable way to meet your weekly nutritional needs. Choosing the right nutritional supplement requires an entirely different skill set. Therefore, you should buy omega 3 supplements that are lower in vitamin A. Also, check product labels for things like "cod liver oil." It contains less omega 3 than fish oil, so it should not be a priority.
Now, more and more ophthalmologists are paying attention to omega 3 advanced supplements rich in natural extracts. Also, some over-the-counter supplements contain a gummy variant used for eye development in children.
There are plenty of sources of omega 3 fatty acids to meet everyone's nutritional needs, be it fresh foods or supplements. But the key is that you eat 140 grams of oily fish per week. Therefore, it is recommended that the elderly strictly consume the selected omega-3 fatty acids to reduce eye discomfort and the risk of eye degeneration and poor vision.