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If you haven’t heard the term “Omega-3 Fatty Acids” bouncing around lately, now’s your chance to get in on an essential secret. Omega-3 fatty acids will not only aid in hair growth, but will magically, or scientifically, do wonders for your locs, skin, and brain.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids is an essential ingredient to the human diet and development. Our bodies cannot supply this essential acid on it’s own which means we depend on specific natural resources to supply us with one of many survival needs.
There are three types of Omega-3’s.
α-linolenic acid (ALA)
eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)
docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
ALA is the shortest essential fatty acid crucial for health. ALA is a plant based polyunsaturated fatty acid that can be found in chia seeds, flax seeds/oil, hemp seeds/oil, soybean, and walnuts. In order for the body to properly absorb the nutrients it needs from flaxseed, the seeds need to be thoroughly crushed, but all other seeds, like chia and hemp can be digested and absorbed as is.
EPA is found in fish oils, such as, salmon, mackerel, herring, cod liver, and sardines. Algae is great EPA source for VEGANS. The body naturally converts ALA into EPA, however, direct consumption of EPA is best for higher absorption rates. The conversion requires a higher demand from the body’s metabolism, and is especially difficult for those with diabetes or other health problems, which is why many recommend going directly to EPA, or DHA sources.
DHA is the king of kings in this essential fatty acid ring. DHA is most notably used by the brain and retina. We are basically absorbing ALA and EPA, to get some DHA. DHA deficiency has been linked to Alzheimer's and Clinical Depression because when DHA is low, so is cognition. Salmon, caviar, anchovies, mackerel, and the brain of many mammals contains high levels of DHA. Sounds harsh, but it’s true. Breast milk also contains high levels of DHA, and are essential for infants. As you may have already heard, health care professionals recommend a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids for pregnant women, because they believe it helps aids in brain development. While fish may contain the highest levels of DHA, they contain high levels of mercury and other toxins which are dangerous for pregnant women and children. In this case, many recommend fresh river salmon and small fish, like sardines, who are said to absorb less toxins from oceanic oil and chemical spills.
What do all of these acronyms have to do with your locs?
The proper consumption of omega-3 fatty acids can help prevent hair loss, but more importantly aid in new healthy hair growth. So, if your locs are looking pretty weak at the root, it could be the right time to add some omega-3 rich foods to your diet. A nice trick is to have ready crushed flax around the house and lightly toss it into your salads and soups. Flax oil is especially good with boiled potatoes, quinoa, or as a replacement for fresh olive oil. Flax oil tends to have a fishy taste, guess why...because of the omega-3’s! That’s how much omega-3 fatty acids you can find in one tablespoon of flax oil.
The omega-3 fatty acids can help aid in poor blood circulation, is an anti inflammatory, and helps promote natural oils to the root and scalp. With all that said, you can imagine how this may help relieve dry scalp, dandruff, and dry, brittle locs. So, if you’re experiencing frequent breakage at the root, this may be another reason to add some rich and healthful ingredients to your diet.
What’s cool to remember is, what’s good for your locs, is good for your skin and nails. So, if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above in your nails or skin and in your locs, you may have just discovered a natural, healthy, non-toxic cure. The important notion to keep in mind is, often, when taking the natural path, we may not experience positive changes in minutes, days or weeks. These changes have long lasting, long term, positive effects on your body and mind. Patients and trust is key, to more than just beauty.