Omega-3 fatty acids encompass a family of unsat-urated fatty acids. This family includes α-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). EPA and DHA are essential in the production of nerve tissue, hormones, and cellular membranes. The body is able to synthesize EPA and DHA from ALA, but this conversion is inefficient in most people. EPA is converted in the body to prostaglandins that are anti-inflammatory in nature and have been shown to lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides; prevent formation of atherosclerotic plaque; and improve some dermatologic conditions. Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and tuna, and plant sources such as flaxseed and flaxseed oil, canola oil, soybean oil, and nuts are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Many over-the-counter omega-3 ...

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