Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Omega-3s vs. Body Fat

When talking with clients about nutrition, no matter what their goals or desires are (weight loss, weight gain, general conditioning, etc.) I ALWAYS recommend they take an omega-3/fish oil supplement.

The response I usually get goes something like this, "Ahhh fish oil, are you serious?"

Absolutely! Out of the 4 essential supplements I recommend, this is number 1!

What people don't understand is that omega-3 fatty acids, apart from the benefits listed below, play a part in fat loss. Yup you read that right. A fat that helps you lose fat! Sounds backwards I know, but hear me out.

Just a few benefits to these oh-so-important oils:

-Decrease systemic inflammation (thus possibly warding of heart disease, asthma, arthritis, macular degeneration, and a host of other diseases or maladies).

-Increase utilization of fat stores from the adipocytes.

-Increase serotonin levels (the happy neurotransmitter). Therefore, fish oils will decrease incidence of depression, anxiety, panic attack, and reduce carbohydrate cravings.

-Fish oils will improve your cardiovascular risk profile by lowering VLDL, triglycerides, homocysteine, fibrinogen, and increasing HDL levels. Combining fish oils with plant sterols will improve lipid levels even more than either alone.

-Fish oils can also decrease blood pressure by several mechanisms. These include increases in the vasodilatory compound, nitric oxide, reducing vascular inflammation, blocking the constrictive elements in the vascular wall such as the calcium channels reducing blood viscosity, and inhibiting a blood vessel constrictor (thromboxane). Lipoprotein (a) is another CVD predictor that can be lowered by fish oils (a 19% reduction was seen with natural, stable fish oils and just 4% with a highly purified fish oil).

-Fish oils are a great stress fighter. Supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids inhibits the adrenal activation of steroids, aldosterone, epinephrine, and norepinephrine (catecholamines) elicited by a mental stress, apparently through effects exerted at the level of the central nervous system. Therefore, for the same amount of stress, one will produce fewer stress hormones if consuming fish oils on a regular basis.

-Decrease muscle soreness.

-Decrease incidence of tendonitis.

-The possible destruction of existing cancer cells, in addition to possibly thwarting metastasis.

-Fish oils turn on the lipolytic genes (fat burning genes).

-Fish oils turn off the lipogenic genes (fat storage genes).

Omega-3s, like those found in EFA Icon, burn body fat in 3 different ways. First off, they allow the body to burn fat in situations where fat burning is turned off, such as after a high-carb meal or after high-intensity exercise (where the body preferentially burns glycogen). Note: although high-intensity exercise leads to a decrease in fat burning WHILE exercising, it does lead to more fat loss AFTER training as your body relies more of fat calories for energy than sugar, which is the key.

Secondly, high amounts of omega-3s increase insulin sensitivity. If your body is sensitive to insulin, less insulin is produced after a meal, which means less fat is stored. Similarly, if the body is sensitive to insulin, and the hormone is properly managed, more stored fat is released and incinerated each day.

Thirdly, omega-3s increase the heat of your cellular "furnaces", which are otherwise known as the mitochondria and the peroxisomes. Omega-3s make these organelles burn more and more energy, thus turning you into a fat-burning machine.

There's also evidence that omega-3s might also increase the amount of leptin produced by the body (high leptin means decreased hunger and an increased metabolic rate).

So don't put it off another day.

Check out EFA Icon by clicking the link below.

Don't make it harder on your body to burn fat, let fish go to work for you!

Resurrect your body back to life!



PS. Next boot camp starts Monday March 16, get your FREE week at:
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1 comment:

susan allport said...

Thought you would be interested in this short omega-3 video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIgNpsbvcVM