Many ill effects of aging are caused by low-grade, chronic inflammation.
These slow-burning internal fires damage tissues and underlie many cancers, vascular disorders, and dementias. Inflammation is partially regulated through the eicosanoid pathway. Age, poor diet, and other factors tip the balance of this pathway from anti-inflammatory to pro-inflammatory.
Omega-3 rich fish oil rebalances the eicosanoid pathway and safely helps reduce inflammation.
What is the the eicosanoid pathway?
The eicosanoid pathway is a signaling pattern that regulates inflammation when needed. The eicosanoid pathway helps turn on inflammation when it’s needed and turn it off once it has done its job. This is accomplished through signaling molecules called eicosanoid. There are two types of these signaling molecules- one that is pro-inflammatory, and one that is anti-inflammatory. The pro-inflammatory signaling molecules are produced from Omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, whereas the anti-inflammatory molecules are mostly produced from Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Omega-3 also produces three additional classes of signaling molecules – called resolvins, protectins, and maresins. These go beyond suppressing inflammation by also promoting healing and actively protecting against cellular damage.
The ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 is a major factor in determining whether the eicosaonoid pathway will produce predominantly pro-inflammatory or anti-inflammatory signals. Our typical Western diet contains far more Omega-6 than Omega-3 fats – an imbalance that pushes our eicosanoid pathway toward pro-inflammatory signaling, resulting in chronic inflammation.
Fish oil improves the ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 thus reducing the incidence of age associated inflammatory disorders including cardiovascular, autoimmune, metabolic, and neurogenerative diseases.
Inflammation-driven diseases takes us down to the road to premature disability and death. Reversing that inflammation with EPA and DHA rich fish oil represents a means of slowing certain agin processes.