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Tracing the Discovery of Omega 3 Fatty Acids

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By Edited May 2, 2015 0 0

Omega 3 fatty acid has been gaining wide media attention for the past few years. It is supposedly beneficial for the heart because its essential EPA and DHA content could strengthen the cardiovascular muscles.

But did you know that Omega 3 was discovered based on a hunch made by a Danish doctor. The discovery of this essential fatty acid has been credited to Dr. Jorn Dyerberg. Together with Hans Olaf Bang, Dr. Dyerberg traveled to Greenland to study the Inuit Eskimo tribe.

The Start of a Hunch Led to the Discovery of Omega 3

Dr. Jorn Dyerberg was fascinated by the Greenland Eskimos. He observed that incidences of cardiovascular disorders among the Inuit tribes were significantly lower than the world averages. This observation led Dr. Dyerberg to think that there could be something special with the lifestyles and diet of the Eskimos.

What startled Dr. Dyerberg was that the Eskimos in Greenland were primarily subsisting on fatty fish and whale oil called blubber. A clear paradox was observed by Dr. Dyerberg because blubber is basically fat and should be bad for the health. But the Greenland Eskimos disproved the common notion that all fats could lead to cardiovascular disorders.

So in 1970, Dr. Dyerberg conveyed his intention to study the Inuit to Hans Olaf Bang. The two decided that they should go to Greenland in order to get blood samples from the Eskimos. They set off aboard dog sleds across the freezing landscape of Greenland in order to reach the Inuit Eskimo community.

Upon reaching the Eskimos, Drs. Dyerberg and Bang collected blood samples. Later, they found out that the Eskimo blood has high concentration of unsaturated fatty acids. It was due to the high fat diet of the Eskimos. Thus, it led to the ultimate discovery of Omega 3 as an essential fatty acid.

How Omega 3 Fatty Acid Helps Your Body

There are numerous benefits that you can enjoy from Omega 3 fatty acids. These essential fats can not be produced by your body naturally. You have to get them from your diet. Fatty fish and other sea foods are good sources of essential fatty acids.

Omega 3 fatty acids could promote the development of good cardiovascular function. It could help promote the healthy production of enzymes in your body needed by your heart and for other cellular functions.

Some of the best sources of Omega 3 fatty acids are sockeye salmon, tuna, mackerel, and sardines. Herring, halibut, and the Atlantic trout are also excellent sources of essential fatty acids.

These beneficial fatty acids however are not only available from fatty fish. You can also find them on flaxseeds, tofu, soy beans, walnuts and cauliflower. By including these foods in your daily diet, your body will have the opportunity to absorb the beneficial fatty acids.

From a mere hunch made by Dr. Jorn Dyerberg, Omega 3 fatty acids have truly come of age today. Millions of people are already familiar with these fatty acids and how they can keep the body healthy and stronger.

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