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TAG | Docosahexaenoic Acid

Due to busy schedules, fast food and ever-changing tastes kids can sometimes miss out on essential nutrients in the diet. In fact, some natural health experts believe that there are certain nutritional deficiencies that exist below the surface of common learning, behavioral and developmental issues in children. These types of children’s health challenges are on the rise, affecting an estimated 17% percent of children today. While some children require medical and pharmaceutical solutions for their issues, addressing key nutritional deficiencies may be a smart complementary strategy.

One such nutritional deficiency in our children’s diets today is the severe lacking in essential omega-3 fats, and DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) in particular. DHA is a primary structural component of the human brain and retina. Research shows that DHA aids in the optimal development and function of the brain, eyes, and central nervous system especially during childhood. This essential fat is consumed at very low levels in a typical North American diet, and it’s easy to see why. DHA and omega-3 fats in general can primarily be found in fatty fish, seaweeds and green leafy vegetables – not exactly every kid’s favorite foods. Low dietary DHA isn’t just a problem for children who suffer from behavioral or learning disabilities; it can affect all children and may even negatively impact their proper growth and development.

National guidelines today recommend 2 or more servings of fatty fish per week to make up for the dietary DHA deficit, but it can be daunting to try to fit fatty fish into a kid-friendly meal plan. Whether it’s personal taste, limited availability or the increasing concern about the high levels of mercury in fish, more and more consumers are turning to supplemental fish oils rather than heading to the fish counter at the grocery store. So if supplementation is more your kid’s speed, the National Institutes of Health guidelines suggest that 2-3 year old children consume a minimum of 145 mg of DHA per day, 4-6 year olds should consume at least 200 mg and children 7 years old and older should consume at least 220 mg of daily DHA.

Luckily, ReNew Life has perfected fish oil for kids making supplementation a cinch. The new Norwegian Gold Kid’s DHA is a nutrition-packed, tiny, chewable softgel with a fruit punch flavor that kids love, without the sugar of typical kid’s fish oil supplements. Taste is by far the most important factor for picky kids, but parents will appreciate the optimized level of DHA. Not only does each serving provide 200 mg of essential DHA, it also provides 500 IU of vitamin D3 for healthy bones and the antioxidant astaxanthin. Each batch of Norwegian Gold Kid’s DHA fish oil is also independently tested by IFOS and certified a 5-star rated fish oil, meeting or exceeding all world standards for overall quality, potency and freshness.

So the days of pinching noses to get fish oil down are over. Parents now have the choice of the best-tasting, highest potency DHA supplement for their kids coupled with famous ReNew Life Norwegian Gold fish oil quality.

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Omega-3s and Heart Health

A recent study published in the journal Diabetes Care has found that low doses of the omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosaheaxaenoic acid (DHA), and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) reduced the risk of heart arrhythmia-related events in diabetic patients who had previously suffered a heart attack.

1,014 diabetic patients, aged 60 to 80 years old, were randomized into four groups and consumed margarine that contained either 223 mg EPA and 149 mg DHA, 1.9 g ALA, both EPA/DHA and ALA, or no omega-3 fatty acids every day for 40 months. The group that consumed the margarine with EPA/DHA and ALA experienced an 84 percent lower risk of arrhythmia-related events and a 72 percent lower risk of arrhythmia-related events and fatal coronary events when compared to the group consuming the plain margarine. Heart arrhythmia is an irregular heartbeat, and can lead to cardiac arrest.

The authors of the study suggest a few possible reasons why these omega-3s might be helpful in diabetics with heart disease. One, they might play a role in regulating insulin sensitivity, an important factor in diabetes. Two, they may help to lower blood sugar levels. And three, their anti-inflammatory properties may help to reverse insulin resistance. All these factors can lead to heart disease if unaddressed.

More studies will be done to determine the precise role each omega-3 plays in heart arrhythmia and heart disease, but this study adds to the thousands of studies illustrating the heart-healthy benefits of omega-3 oils.

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