Besides cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, there is one epidemic, condition, or disorder that is rapidly spreading.
In fact, due to this disorder, today’s younger generation, for the first time in history, has an expected life expectancy that is less than older generations.
The epidemic: overweight or obesity.
Current research shows that being overweight or obese is associated with chronic disease development such as heart disease, insulin resistance, cancer, and diabetes.
Currently, there is much debate as to the cause of obesity. However, what has been concluded is that obesity involves low-level inflammation in your adipose tissue, or your fat cells, that leads to altered gene expression release of pro-inflammatory cytokines, and a decrease in adipokines that potentially could control your weight and decrease your energy intake.
Research is ongoing to develop pills, weight loss equipment, surgeries, and other ways to slow, stop, and reverse this deadly cycle.
One method, currently getting a lot of attention, is the use of omega-3 fatty acids to slow, and potentially, reverse the effects of inflammation on fat cells.
A review of current research published in the journal Advanced Nutrition, shows how omega-3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA, may have a potential role in suppressing inflammation and increasing weight loss in overweight or obese individuals.
Obesity and Metabolic Syndrome
When most people think of obesity, they typically picture someone who is morbidly obese.
However, what they may not understand is that being even 5 or 10 pounds overweight, could lead to metabolic changes in your body, which contributes to obesity-related disorders.
One disorder, Metabolic Syndrome, has been linked to being overweight or obese.
Metabolic Syndrome, which is a condition characterized by a combination of disorders, has been linked to insulin resistance (precursor), diabetes (possible future development), and heart disease.
It is characterized by high blood pressure, high cholesterol, abdominal obesity, high triglycerides, reduced HDL cholesterol, and hyperglycemia.
Plus, metabolic syndrome is associated with pro-inflammatory and prothrombotic profiles, which further increase your disease risk.
Evidenced by past and current research, being overweight or obese has been linked to an increased risk for developing metabolic syndrome, due to increased adipose inflammation.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Your Weight
According to this study, omega-3 fatty acids may play a large role in managing your weight and reducing your risk for metabolic syndrome.
Although more research is needed in this area, it has been shown by numerous studies, on both humans and animals, that omega-3 fatty acids may reduce inflammation, and alter fat metabolism in your cells.
The researchers show that there are many processes that lead to inflammation of your adipose tissue. They are as follows:
• Adipose tissue hypoxia
• Endoplasmic reticulum stress
• Saturated fatty acids ingestion that activates the innate immune system
• Increased tissue secretion of macrophages and T-lymphocytes
Omega-3 fatty acids, when ingested and processed by your body, have been shown to release anti-inflammatory molecules, which could reduce inflammation levels in your body.
This could be beneficial for reducing inflammation in your fat cells, which could enhance the secretion or gene expression of adiponectin, which is a potent weight management adipokine secreted by your fat cells.
Typically, when there is increased inflammation in your fat cells, there is a suppression of adiponectin and leptin, which could increase your energy intake and reduce your ability to burn fat for energy.
Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to lower triglycerides, which could improve at least one parameter associated with metabolic syndrome.
EPA and DHA could also alter how your body handles fatty acids in your body.
It has been shown that EPA and DHA may increase fat burning in your liver, adipose tissue, and your small intestines.
Plus, EPA and DHA could also inhibit fatty-acid oxidation (fat burning) in your liver, which means there are increased fatty-acid levels to use for energy, and less fat to be stored in your adipose tissue.
They concluded that omega-3 fatty acids could prevent weight gain by increasing hepatic, skeletal, and liver fat oxidation while inhibiting your ability for lipogenesis.
Also, they showed that omega-3 fatty acids, due to their anti-inflammatory ability, could slow adipose tissue inflammation, which could favor reduced insulin resistance.
This could reduce weight and risk for developing metabolic syndrome in overweight or obese individuals, therefore improving health.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Your Health
Omega-3 fatty acids have been associated with improvements in many different areas of health.
They have been shown to reduce cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin resistance, and weight, which could decrease your risk for developing insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, and heart disease.
Great sources of omega-3 fatty acids are commonly found in fatty fish (wild salmon), nuts, flaxseeds, shellfish, certain vegetables, and high-quality omega-3 supplements. Including one, or all of these sources, could increase weight loss and may improve your health.
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