Omega-3's Impact with Depression
By Lydia Wallie, Nutrition Director
If you (or someone you know) are struggling with depression or other mood disorders, it is advisable to take a high-quality omega-3 fish oil supplement containing both EPA and DHA.
As a teenager, I developed major depression six months into being 100% vegan with no supplementation. One day, I had some salmon, and my world changed almost instantly for the better. I felt normal again for the first time in months. Now, I’m a huge advocate for supplementing omega-3, specifically EPA/DHA from fish oil, for anyone who has inflammation, or susceptibility to mood disorders like depression and anxiety.
This is my anecdotal experience for supplementing with omega-3, but what does the research say? Here are some sources:
“Low omega-3 levels have been associated with central nervous system-linked disorders such as poor cognition, depression, anxiety disorders, poor anger control, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and accelerated neurodegeneration in the elderly.” (1)
“Evidence suggests that omega-3 fatty acids are important for a variety of mental health outcomes and have been shown to improve both mood and behaviors.” (2)
“Dietary supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids rich in EPA during pregnancy or postpartum reduces some symptoms associated with depression. DHA supplementation to healthy pregnant women can also reduce the risk of PPD [postpartum depression].” (3)
“A low omega-3 index in late pregnancy was associated with higher depression score three months postpartum.” (4)
“Patients with a current depressive episode (especially the more severe cases with comorbid anxiety) have circulating N-3 PUFA [omega-3] levels lower than those in remission and healthy controls.” (5)
“Numerous epidemiological studies have shown a strong correlation between low n-3 PUFA [omega-3] status and higher prevalence and severity of different neuropsychiatric disorders.” (6)
Start taking omega-3 from a trusted and recommended source, and let us know what difference you notice!