Fatty Acids Key to Enhancing Mental Function

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A Japanese study published in the journal of Neuroscience Research reveals that taking daily supplements with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids may “boost mental function in elderly patients with mild cognitive decline,” according to the article by Jessica Fraser. It was found that the patients diagnosed with organic brain lesions who took the supplements were able to show an immediate improvement in their memory.

Researchers conducted a three-month trial of 21 patients who had been diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment. The group was divided in half, with the first portion taking multiple daily capsules of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), arachidonic acid (ARA) and asthaxanthin, while the second group was prescribed a placebo. Participants were tested to assess neuropsychological status at both the beginning and the end of the session, which lasted for three months.

“It is suggested from the data that ARA and DHA supplementation can improve the cognitive dysfunction that is due to organic brain damages or aging,” said one researcher. This may be because ARA levels decrease in the brain with aging, but replacing them might actually slow mental decline. Alzheimer’s patients taking the placebo did not report any improvements.

Natural omega-3 fatty acids can be found in salmon, flax seed, and walnuts while natural omega-6 fatty acids are typically more common in foods like cooking oils, salad dressings and nuts. Both provide additional boosts in other areas of health, including reducing inflammation throughout the body, keeping blood from clotting excessively, and maintaining the fluidity of cell membranes. Because of the health benefits, Home Care Assistance Columbus suggests making these fatty acids a part of your daily routine, whether through supplements or meal choices.

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