Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Omega-3 And Weight Loss

If you have made the decision to lose weight, you probably would like to see results as quickly and effectively as possible. Most experts will agree that the safest way to weight loss is through a combination of a healthy, low-calorie diet combined with a daily program of physical activity. But what if you have already implemented these two elements into your daily lifestyle? Is there another way to increase your edge and set you on a more direct path to achieve your weight loss goals? There has been much written recently about the link between omega-3 fatty acids and weight loss results. The evidence has been compelling, and suggests that omega-3 promotes weight loss, whether in the form of supplements, or increasing the intake of food that contains this essential fatty acid.

What is Omega-3?

Omega-3 is considered an essential fatty acid that the body does not produce, but must receive from an outside source. The best way to get omega-3 fatty acids into your body is through eating a diet that is rich in canola oil, walnuts, and a variety of fish, including salmon, sardines, tuna and herring. The other way to increase your intake of the omega-3 fatty acid is to take fish oil supplements, which can be found in most pharmacies and health food stores.

While it has been known for some time that this essential fatty acid was beneficial in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, as well as reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke, questions began to arise over a connection between omega-3 and weight loss. It made sense that if omega-3 fatty acids lowered cholesterol and helped to control blood sugar levels, that it would be beneficial for dieters as well.

Studies on Omega-3 And Its Effects With Fat Loss

The next step was for researchers to study the link between them in controlled, clinical studies. Most of the results of these studies have shown that people who take fish oil supplements or eat a diet that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids had a significant increase in weight loss amounts than those who did not.

Most of the researchers that have studied this link between omega-3 and weight loss will stress the importance of combining the intake of omega-3 fatty acids with a low-calorie, healthy diet and a regular exercise program. However, if you are having trouble losing weight due to genetic factors, a slow metabolism or other factors, taking an omega-3 supplement can increase the effectiveness of your diet and exercise efforts.

The research has shown that omega-3 assists in weight loss by keeping insulin levels in the body low. This is why this supplement is also very helpful for those who have been diagnosed with diabetes. When insulin levels in the body are high, it inhibits the body from burning fat for fuel, allowing the fat to remain in the storehouses of the body and keeping weight up as well. Lower insulin levels will make the body burn the excess fat within for fuel, speeding the rate of weight loss. If you are about to begin a weight loss program of any kind, taking a fish oil supplement or increasing the amount of omega-3 foods in your diet will give you an advantage in achieving your goals.

How much Omega-3 for Fat Loss?

Many health care professionals will recommend a daily intake of 3000 to 4000 mg. of standardized fish oil. This translates into two or three servings of cold-water fish each week or fish oil capsules that will equal this dosage amount. There are side effects that some folks experience when taking the fish oil supplements, such as flatulence and diarrhea. These issues can be greatly reduced by taking a time-release version of the capsules.

The fish oil supplements can also interact with some types of medications, so it is important to talk to your doctor before beginning any type of supplement regimen. However, if you are looking for a way to see results with your diet and exercise program, omega-3 and weight loss may be a link that you want to consider.

Article Directory: