What Is Omega-3?
Omega-3 is a long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid, and as science parses the roles of nutrients, it turns out that omega-3 fats do many good things for the body and the brain. Known as an "essential" fatty acid, meaning the body must take it in from food sources, omega-3 is important to human metabolism.
It exists in nature in three forms, one derived from land plants and two derived from marine sources. In the body, omega-3 is highly concentrated in the brain; it is critical to the formation and maintenance of nerve cell membranes. Research shows that in the nervous system, omega-3s foster the processing of information, stabilize mood, and stave off cognitive decline. Low levels of omega-3s are linked to poor memory and depression. Omega-3 fats are also critical for the formation of anti-inflammatory compounds in the body.