Omega-3 may slow aging process, study finds
October 3, 2012 -- Hoping to extend your life? Eat more cold water fish such as tuna or salmon and consume less corn oil.
According to new research out of Ohio State University, in the category of omega fatty acids, you’re advised to take more omega-3 and less omega-6, those fatty acids derived from such foods as corn oil, sunflower oil and safflower oil.
Got it? More 3, less 6.
Ohio State scientists are convinced Omega-3 fatty acids, found naturally in certain fishes as well as in dietary supplements have a restorative effect on ever-shortening telomeres — those DNA sequences that are known to diminish as we age.
Shortened telomeres equal shortened life.
Ohio State clinical psychologist Jan Kiecolt-Glaser, lead author of the study says, “I’ve spent many years studying the relationship between stress and immune function. And I became interested in how nutrition might be a factor there. The omega-3 story is one of the most compelling stories in terms of some of the immunological effects — particularly their anti-inflammatory effects.”
While she appreciates the science community comes to different conclusions on the benefits of omega-3, Kiecolt-Glaser believes the anti-inflammatory properties in omega-3 fatty acids help preserve the length of telomeres. Inflammation speeds up cell division which is linked to shorted telomeres.
The ratio of fatty acids in our diet is out of whack, says Kiecolt-Glaser. “Those vegetable oils only really entered our diet in the early 1900s and that’s when the omega-3 and omega-6 ratio which people thought was two or three to one rose to its current 14 or 15 to one. Omega-6 is important but we have so much of it in our diet already,” she says.
Read the full story at the Toronto Star