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Role of Omega 3

DPA (docosapentaenoic acid) is naturally present in human milk. It is postulated to be an essential fatty acid for infant nutrition and development. Seal oil is one of the few known natural sources of DPA. In contrast, fish oils have little or no DPA. Recent studies show that DPA is involved with the healing process associated with cardiovascular diseases, namely atherosclerosis and thrombosis.

DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) has been identified as an essential fatty acid in brain, nerve and eye tissue. It is especially important in the development of infant’s visual acuity and motor skills. DHA is supplied naturally through breast milk and more recently, through DHA supplemented formula. Harp Seal Oil is an excellent source of DHA.

EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) reduces inflammation and blood clots within the cardiovascular system. Clinical tests have shown people with diets rich in EPA are less prone to inflamed joints (Rheumatoid arthritis), inflammation of the intestine (Chron’s disease), lupus, asthma, multiple sclerosis and skin disease.


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Benefits of Omega 3

Recent studies have demonstrated that DHA supplementation during pregnancy and lactation is necessary, to prevent deficiency of the mother’s DHA status during these periods, to meet the high fetal requirement for DHA. It has been shown that premature babies have lower levels of DHA in their tissues as compared to full-term babies. Thus, supplementation of infant formula with DHA/marine oils may be necessary in order to provide them with as much DHA as that available to their breast-fed counterparts. Feeding of infants with formula devoid of omega-3 fatty acids resulted in lack of deposition of DHA in their visual and neural tissues with adverse effects on vision and nervous systems. According to Dr. Connor, “The signs of omega-3 deficiency in infancy are subtle, for example, omega-3 fatty acid deficiency in infants can translate into:

  • impaired vision
  • abnormalities on the electroretinogram – which measures retinal nerve function
  • behavioral changes such as polydypsia (excessive thirst), hyperactivity and perhaps less cognitive ability. Some of these changes have been described only in subhuman primates. So it’s clearly essential for pregnant and breast feeding women to ensure their dietary intake of omega-3 PUFA is adequate,”

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What is Experts Say

Dr. Fereidoon Shahidi of Memorial University of Newfoundland, a world-renowned scientist on seal product development, provides the following explanation:

“In comparing seal oil with fish oils, assimilation of seal oil into the body is more efficient than fish oils. EPA, DHA, and DPA in seal oil are located primarily in the terminal positions of the triglyceride molecules (as in humans) while they are preferentially present in the middle position of triglycerides in fish oils. The difference in the location of the Omega 3 PUFA is a major reason for the superior effect of seal oils compared to fish oils in disease prevention and potential health benefits.

In a new study, the world-respected scientist Sonja L. Connor noted that omega-3 PUFAs will lower the plasma triglycerides even more remarkably in “healthy” people. For primary prevention, she suggested 2-3 grams of omega-3 per day! The benefits derived from omega-3 supplementation can be enjoyed by a broad spectrum of health-conscious people, concerned with maintaining a high, energetic quality of life.


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