Omega 3 as anti-inflammatory and helps fertility
The levels of omega 3 fatty acids seem to be directly related to better reproductive rates in women seeking pregnancy, either naturally or through assisted reproduction. But not only when we seek pregnancy, but the omega 3 found in a diet rich in anti-inflammatories They are very important and interesting to take care of our body in a healthy and natural way and favor a state of low inflammation.
I tell you more so you can see all the benefits
What is Omega 3?
First of all, let's start at the beginning. Omega 3 is a type of essential fatty acid that we normally acquire through our diet and that we are not capable of synthesizing by ourselves. Surely it sounds to you that fish like salmon is rich in omega 3.
There are three types of omega 3 fatty acids which are:
- ALA alpha-linolenic acid
- eicopentaenoic acid EPA
- DHA docosahexaenoic acid
Of these three, those with a action in our body are mainly EPA and DHA and these are acquired either from fish and shellfish or from nuts, dried fruits, seaweed or in specific health supplements.
How does Omega 3 help the body and fertility?
Our modern day to day life and the type of diet that we usually have leads us to a pro-inflammatory state of our body. We eat many foods rich in omega 6 or 9 while living in polluted environments forcing our body and immune system to work and we also live with high levels of stress that we have normalized.
All this means that our body has to work to maintain a good balance and if this is not the case, we will have symptoms such as menstrual and period pain, deregulation of the woman's cycle, poor quality or motility of sperm and also symptoms such as swelling or pain in the breasts (mastalgia) especially related to moments of the menstrual cycle such as ovulation and just before menstruation and premenstrual syndrome.
Omega 3, normally, is a powerful ally along with vitamin D as a natural anti-inflammatory that can help us combat this stress in the body and improve the symptoms that we have mentioned.
How much omega 3 to take?
Omega 3 in the form of EPA and DHA should be able to be acquired naturally from a diet rich in fish, natural oil and rich and varied nutrition. It is always important that in case of any doubt or any therapeutic action, you can go to a health professional to accompany you in your process, whether it is fertility or natural health. Since, it is possible that in your specific case the requirements of DHA and EPA vary.
In general, it is estimated that normally an adult person will need a daily intake between EPA fatty acid and DHA fatty acid between 2 and 4 grams per day. It is also estimated that the usual daily intake of the population is usually lower and that this would be the maximum dose of supplementation.
Our typical menu presents an excess of omega 6 versus little omega 3, that is why it is ideal to study the nutritional pattern of each person, especially if a supplement is considered with treatment and thus see the correct value that that person should ingest, also depending on the vital moment, since if there is pregnancy, a greater contribution of dha directed to the development of the embryo is necessary and essential.
Omega 3 and sperm quality
Sperm quality has been drastically declining in the last 40 years in the entire world population, but more specifically in industrialized areas. Assessing what can be done to improve sperm quality, studies have been carried out on diet and supplements in men who want increase concentration or enhance your sperm.
It has been seen in several studies that supplementation with omega 3 in men who want to conceive is beneficial in terms that this molecule facilitates the mobility of sperm, protects them against oxidative stress and it can reduce the rate of immotile spermatozoa and also promotes a higher cell concentration and the integrity of their membranes, thus enhancing their function. (Rooms-Orchards, 2019)
In addition, the addition of omega 3 in freezing media of sperm since studies are showing that frozen semen with omega 3 has better survival rates of these sperm once they are thawed either for insemination as for IVF (Rateb, 2018)
It is for this reason that several commercial houses that prepare vitamins for men seeking pregnancy or preparing for assisted reproduction take omega 3 or dha directly or supplement it separately.
Omega 3 pregnancy and lactation
As we have seen, omega 3 is not only beneficial for men and women seeking pregnancy, but also when the woman is already pregnant. pregnant women should increase the intake of DHA since this molecule is related to the development of the fetus, its entire body and especially its brain and blood flow.
This extra intake of DHA by women can be acquired from food but also in the form of supplements that must be present throughout pregnancy and also during lactation.
Some studies suggest that women with adequate levels of DHA have less risk of premature delivery of the baby and enhance the cognitive capacity and brain development of these children (Alcocer AD)
Take care of your health and you will be taking care of your fertility
Remember that a healthy life, with healthy lifestyle habits, will always help you in your general health and also in your fertility, since you will promote your hormonal health to work correctly.
Supplements are not going to replace a healthy diet and a life with physical activity and enough rest, but they are also there to help us in the moments of our life that we need it. Remember that you will surely have a trained fertility expert nearby who can help you on your way and indicate which foods, vitamins or supplements are most suitable in your particular case.
Assisted reproduction and intake of omega 3
There are interesting studies that evaluate groups of women who were taking omega 3 before their assisted reproduction process and their results were analyzed with other women who had undergone the same treatments but with low blood levels of fatty acids.
The results are interesting since it was associated that the blood levels of EPA are associated with better pregnancy rates, gestation and child born. However, as in everything, more studies are needed to determine the exact mechanism of action, the dosage and which women can benefit from preparing for assisted reproduction treatments with supplements rich in omega 3 fatty acids. (YH Chiu 2018 )
Alcocer, AD, Shamira, TA, Morales, ICV, Ávila, PC, & de Tomasi, JB THE INTAKE OF OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS IMPROVE COGNITIVE SKILLS OF HEALTHY CHILDREN.
Rateb, SA (2018). Influence of omega‐3 incorporation in sperm preservation medium on physical and kinematic properties of chilled and cryopreserved ram spermatozoa. Reproduction in Domestic Animals, 53(6), 1506-1516. increase sperm
Salas-Huetos, A., James, ER, Aston, KI, Jenkins, TG, & Carrell, DT (2019). Diet and sperm quality: Nutrients, foods and dietary patterns. Reproductive biology, 19(3), 219-224. increase sperm
Chiu, YH, Karmon, AE, Gaskins, AJ, Arvizu, M., Williams, PL, Souter, I., … & EARTH Study Team. (2018). Serum omega-3 fatty acids and treatment outcomes among women undergoing assisted reproduction. Human Reproduction, 33