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Health

The Importance of Omega-3 Fats to Overall Health

Most people have heard about the necessity of including omega-3 fats in their diets, but they are unsure of the food sources that supply them. Busy work schedules and long days tempt people to eat quick and easy meals from a fast food restaurant or pre-made dinners from the freezer. A steady diet of “manufactured” foods can lead to vitamin and mineral deficiencies, as well as a lack of essential omega-3 fats.

Why Do You Need Omega-3 Fats?

Omega-3 fats are essential to good heart health. The inclusion of omega-3 rich foods in the diet are believed to considerably lower the risk of fatal heart attacks. Over the centuries, the human diet has changed drastically. The hunter-gatherers who subsisted on their hunting and fishing skills along with the natural plant life they gathered, had a diet that contained a balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fats

Most of the food they consumed was low in total fat and saturated fat. As humans have become more dependent on manufactured foods, including vegetable oils and margarine, the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats is out of balance from the original 2:1 to 10-20:1.

Benefits of Omega-3 Fats

The primary benefit of omega-3 fats is improved heart health. Your cardiovascular health benefits from lower blood pressure, fewer triglyceride concentrations, and an improved endothelial function, which promotes the growth of new blood vessels. 

Omega-3 fats also contribute to healthier and stronger bones, protection against both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, reduced risk of Crohn’s disease, and lessens the chance of developing autoimmune disorders, such as lupus and nephropathy. 

Medical research has determined omega-3 fats assist in promoting the growth of new blood vessels and are antiarrhythmic, antithrombotic, antiatherosclerotic, and anti-inflammatory. Some research suggests omega-3 fats also reduce the risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.

Foods Containing Omega-3 Fats

The foods listed here contain natural omega-3 fats. Avoid processed foods that have “added” omega-3 fats.

  •  Flaxseed oil
  •  Flaxseed (whole or ground)
  •  Salmon
  •  Chia seeds
  •  Caviar
  •  Sardines
  •  Mackerel
  •  Radish seeds (sprouted or raw)
  •  Walnuts
  •  Butternuts
  •  Tuna fish

These are just a few of foods containing omega-3 fats, and the list starts with items containing the highest quantity. An online search will provide you with many more foods, and you are sure to find some you will enjoy adding to your diet.

Omega-3 fats are necessary for good heart function and health. If you haven’t been getting an adequate supply in your diet, start adding omega-3 fat-rich foods to your daily meals. Your whole body will benefit from this essential food element.

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Health

Different Types of Essential Oils

Essential oils are the aromatic oils which are derived from various plants by the process of steam distillation. Since these oils contain aromatic compounds they have a strong fragrance. While oils can be derived from almost all plants by separating the water based components from the oil, only some of these oils are used in medicines, healthcare, beauty, skincare products, food and other wellness applications. Most of these oils should be diluted with a carrier oil like jojoba oil before being used. Some of the Different types of essential oils which are used extensively for aromatherapy, wellness, and healthcare and skincare applications are discussed below.

Lavender oil is one of the most widely used essential oils due to its pleasant fragrance, relaxing effect and help in treating cuts and bruises. The oil is used for stress alleviation helping the person relax. It can be also used for treating cuts, bruises and boils. The oil is distilled from the lavender plant.

Tea tree oil is an oil which is used mainly for treating skin problems. It can help reduce acne, make acne and other scars less visible. The oil is also used for treating fungal infections like athlete’s foot. The oil is distilled from the Tea tree grown in Australia and is also used in skincare products

Calendula oil is derived from the calendula flowers also called marigold. The oil is suitable for treating acne, reducing scars. It is used for treating problems of those who have sensitive skin. The oil can be added to the bath water for those who suffer from psoriasis

Eucalyptus oil is obtained from the eucalyptus tree. It is widely used for boosting immunity and protecting the person from cold, fever and related illnesses. It can be used to treat problems related to the respiratory system like nasal congestion. However the oil should always be used in the diluted form.

Peppermint oil is distilled from the peppermint herb. It is one of the few essential oils which is edible and can be ingested. It is widely used for treating indigestion and other problems of the digestive tract. It is also used for improving the brain function and boosting immunity

Frankincense oil has been used for thousands of years for religious functions due to its pleasant smell. The oil is used for its relaxing properties, reducing the stress levels and treating depression. It can also help in boosting immunity, reducing inflammation and treat cuts, bug bites.

Oregano oil is extracted from the oregano herb. The oil contains the ingredients, thymol and caracole which have anti-bacterial properties, preventing the growth of disease causing bacteria. The oil can also help to boost the immunity of the user, fighting cold and other similar illness, though it has an unpleasant taste Chamomile oil is made from the chamomile flowers and has a pleasant smell. Though chamomile tea is widely consumed, the oil is convenient to use. This oil is used for relaxation, reducing anxiety and stress levels. Hence the oil is applied to the pillow cover to help the user sleep well.