Diet Low in Omega-3 May Trigger Depression, Mood Disorders

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By Thilaka Ravi


07 February 2011: Insufficient omega-3 fatty acid in diet may cause harmful consequences on synaptic functions and emotional behaviours, a new study found.


These fatty acids are "essential" lipids because the body cannot synthesize them from new. They must therefore be provided through food and their dietary balance is essential to maintain optimal brain functions.


Researchers from Inserm and INRA and their collaborators in Spain collaboration, studied mice fed on a diet low in omega-3 fatty acid.


They found that omega-3 deficiency disturbed neuronal communication specifically. This neuronal dysfunction was accompanied by depressive behaviours.Our results can now corroborate clinical and epidemiological studies which have revealed associations between an omega-3/omega-6 imbalance and mood disorders", said Olivier Manzoni and Sophie Laye.



"To determine if the omega-3 deficiency is responsible for these neuropsychiatric disorders additional studies are, of course, required".


Omega-3 fatty acids are good fats that lower blood pressure and contribute to heart health. They are found mainly in fatty fish, as well as eggs. If you don’t eat either of these foods, you need to include other sources of omega-3 fatty acids in your diet. Pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, walnuts, and soybean oil are all good options.



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