How essential fatty acids effect immunity.
This is Dr. Jim for Be Healthy! Be Happy! College of Immune Health – Immune Health 101: The Nutritional Aspects of Immunity and essential fatty acids
The immune system functions as an integrated network of organs, specialized cells and unique bodily fluids. In this segment, I discuss the nutritional aspects of immunity and in particular the role of essential fatty acids.
Essential fatty acids also known as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids must be consumed in the diet as they cannot be metabolized internally. When it comes to immunity, omega-6 arachidonic acid and omega-3 EPA* and DHA* influence immune cell structure and function as chemical messengers to regulate immune cell function.
Foods rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids include salmon, sardines, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, rainbow trout and tuna. They may also be acquired through supplementation.
*EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid)
Oregon State University Linus Pauling Institute Micronutrient Information Center. Online [available at]: http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic