|Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor|
A recent study suggests that supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids may help slow down and potentially reverse the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by stimulating the repair of cells damaged by inflammation.
The body’s normal response to inflammation is the repair of tissue through a process known as restoration. When restoration does not take place, chronic inflammation may occur. Chronic inflammation is frequently observed in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease.
Participants in the study included 15 individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, 20 with mild cognitive impairment, and 21 controls. The researchers measured the cerebrospinal fluid from those participants as well as brain tissue from 10 Alzheimer’s patients and 10 control subjects.
They examined the samples for indicators of inflammation and receptors involved in the resolution pathway and found that there was, in fact, a resolution pathway in the brain. In Alzheimer’s disease patients, that pathway was disrupted.
Previous research suggests that omega-3 supplementation is a valid way to induce the resolution process and stimulate the uptake of amyloid-beta proteins that have been linked to the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
Researchers from the Karolinska Institut in Sweden conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on February 14, 2014, in The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.
Omega-3s have been linked to a number of health benefits, including alleviating arthritis pain, better moods, improved joint mobility, helping with age related macular degeneration, and aiding your immune system.
Because omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, it is especially important to make sure that they are a part of your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in omega-3s.