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Scientists Link Omega-3s to Reduced Risk of Parkinson's Symptoms

A new study has shown docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in omega-3 fatty acids provides defense against symptoms of Parkinson's disease.

The study was done by scientists from the University Laval in Canada. It will be published in the April 2008 issue of the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Expiremental Biology (FASEB).

Researchers found that mice fed an omega-3 rich diet exhibited an immune effect against MPTP, a compound used by scientists to simulate the effects of Parkinson's.

Alternatively, mice that maintained an ordinary diet not rich in omega-3 essential fatty-acids developed symptoms of Parkinson's disease.

According to the researchers, in mice given omega-3 supplementation--particularly DHA--the omega-3 acids essential fatty acids replaced omega-6 acids in their brains. Omega-6 acids have been linked to an increased risk in cardiovascular disease, cancer, inflammatory and auto-immune diseases.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other health authorities recommend a diet that contains close to a ratio of 1 to 1 omega-3s to omega-6s. Unfortunately, the typical western diet contains as much as 20 times more omega-6s than omega-3s.

The best way to increase omega-3 essential fatty acids and balance omega-6 levels is to maintain a diet rich in wild, cold water fish and by taking a fish oil supplement daily.
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