Did you know that every cell in your body has a membrane made up of fats? These fats, or fatty acids, make up the lipid bilayer in the cell membrane which acts as a gateway to allow nutrients in and waste products out of the cell keeping it healthy and functioning at its optimum. Think of it like a bouncer at a night-club, allowing good guys in, kicking out the riff raff, and keeping the internal numbers moderated. And a good robust bouncer should (theoretically!) do the best job. Your skin cells are no exception and a lack of Omega 3 fatty acids (your bouncers) can severely compromise the skin.
Omega 3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, found in oily fish, are anti-inflammatory, help to plump and protect skin cells and hydrate the skin. They will also work on changing the consistency of sebum to prevent stickiness and clogging in the pores (congestion) and build a healthy acid mantle, the protective layer in the skin.
So, why supplement with Omega 3? The typical diet contains an overload of inflammatory omega 6. Mostly found in highly refined plant oils such as corn, soy, safflower and sunflower (which are in EVERY processed food) nuts and seeds, oil based dressings such as commercial mayonnaise, margarine, pastries and fried foods.
The typical diet can have a ratio of up to 50:1 Omega 6 to Omega 3. The ideal ratio being 1:1 for skin health, cardiovascular and hormone health.
Yes, eating wild caught, oily fish 3 times a week is wonderful but let’s be realistic, it’s tricky to find it and it’s costly. Once there is an inflammatory skin condition present such as acne, psoriasis or eczema, it’s important to take a therapeutic dose to make a physical change to the skin. Remember, your skin is the last organ to receive nutrition!
Be sure to buy a high quality fish oil which is sustainably sourced and has been purified to remove heavy metals and other contaminants.
Skin Specialist Naturopath