One of the easiest ways infuse your hair, skin--and really, your whole body--with fresh, dewy life this winter is to make sure you're getting enough omega-3 fatty acids.
We've probably all heard of omega-3s by now, and we probably all know they're an important part of maintaining good overall health. Still, many of us may not realise exactly just how powerful these fatty acids are. What's more, many of us don't realise that not all sources of omega-3s are created equal. 🤔
What is an Omega-3 Fatty Acid?
An omega-3 fatty acid is an essential nutrient, meaning that we require this nutrient for good health, but our bodies can not make it themselves. So, we need to get omega-3 from food sources.
Omega-3s are made up of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
The Benefits of Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Your Hair
The benefits of omega-3 fatty acids are enjoyed by our body and mind year-round, but even more so in the winter months. 🧤
- Omega-3s have been shown to improve hair growth and prevent hair loss by providing the necessary nutrients to the hair follicles and scalp.
- Omega-3s have been shown to prevent inflammation of the hair follicle (a factor known to directly cause hair loss)
- Promote scalp circulation thus potentially triggering hair growth
The Benefits of Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Your Skin
- Omega-3s moisturise your skin and reduce dry, flaky, "crocodile" skin that can affect us all in the winter. Bonus: Omega-3 rich Sachi inchi* is also a great source of skin hydrating vitamin E!
- Omega-3s have been shown to reduce acne.
- Omega-3s are known to help improve the skin's barrier function (naturally sealing in moisture and keeping out irritants)
*You can find Sacha inchi in the Perfect Plant Protein Powder, see below.
The Benefits of Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Your Overall Health
Low levels of omega-3s or imbalanced omega ratios (ratios where the other omega dominates) can lead to many health problems such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, inflammatory illnesses and auto-immune diseases.
- A lack of omega-3s in one's diet can also lead to learning difficulties and behavioural problems, but also depression and other mental health issues.
- Omega-3s can help your skin heal faster and better after sun damage or other wounds.
- Omega-3s are vital for healthy brain development and brain function
- Omega-3s can reduce anxiety and depression (as mentioned), which can often accompany the cooler months.
Best & Worst Sources of Omega-3s
You can find omega-3s in milk, yoghurt, canola oil (not recommended*) and eggs but if you're trying to reduce your dairy intake, you might be better to look for a different source?
Fish such as herring, mackerel, sardines, salmon, tuna and trout are sources of omega-3s but if you're looking for a more plant-based source read on...
Plants are an excellent source of ALA and can be found in foods like Acai berries, hemp seeds, soybeans, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds, and abundantly in sacha inchi--a nutty-tasting seed native to Peru.
*Canola is not a healthy oil despite what canola oil companies may say. It is a high-inflammatory oil as the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 is very imbalanced (very high in omega-6 and very low in omega-3). Seed oils should be avoided or used sparingly.
EPA and DHA are found in fatty fish, like sardines and salmon. Vegan EPA and DHA can be found in seaweed and algae, but you'd have to consume a lot to provide your body with an adequate amount. Thankfully, there are seaweed and algae supplements for people who don't care to start eating sea vegetation. 😅
Here's the catch though: while your body can convert some plant-based ALA into DHA and EPA, the conversion usually only produces a tiny amount. BUT, get this: Sacha inchi has over 47% more ALA than fish oils, so the conversion rate is much higher, allowing your body to produce more DHA and EPA than most plant-based omega sources.
This doesn't necessarily mean you don't need to get your DHA and EPA from fatty fish or sea vegetation too, but it does mean if you do make sacha inchi part of your diet, you'll have to consume substantially less of them--good news for vegans and vegetarians!
Our Perfect Recommendations for a Simple Way to Get More Omega-3s
Perfect Organic Acai Powder (or capsules)
Perfect Organic Plant Protein Powder (with Omega-3 sources: Hemp Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds and Sacha Inchi Seeds)
Learn more about sacha inchi here.
Don’t let the winter blues get you down. Look and feel your best by adding some plant-based omega-3 to your diet. Order Perfect Organic Plant Protein Powder and/or Perfect Organic Açai Berry Powder or Capsules today!
Add them to smoothies, protein balls, yoghurt, smoothie bowls, porridge to supercharge your nutrition. (Get more recipe ideas here!) In as little as a few weeks, you can start noticing the difference in your hair, skin and your outlook on life.
Your Health is Your Wealth! 🙌🏻