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  • Writer's pictureshazia faisal

Omega3 Fatty acids: Are they Good for PCOS?

Updated: Feb 2, 2023

Polycystic ovarian syndrome is a common hormonal disorder among women in their childbearing age. Majority of women with this syndrome experience irregular periods, infertility, excess facial hair, depression and anxiety. This syndrome is also associated with increased risk of other metabolic conditions like type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Insulin resistance is a major contributing factor and it is suggested by data that around 70% of women with PCOS are insulin resistant. Dietary modification play an important role in the management of PCOS. The data emphasizes that women with PCOS should not exclusively focus on low carb diet but also consumed healthy fats like omega 3 fatty acids.




𝐖𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐨𝐦𝐞𝐠𝐚 𝟑 𝐟𝐚𝐭𝐭𝐲 𝐚𝐜𝐢𝐝𝐬 Omega-3 is a family of fats that are important for health. These fats come in different forms:

ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) cannot be made in the body, so must be eaten in our diet. It has important functions and is needed to make other omega-3 fats. ALA is found mainly in vegetable oils, rapeseed and linseed (flaxseed), nuts (walnuts, pecans and hazelnuts) and green leafy vegetables.

EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) are long-chain fats that can be made from ALA in our bodies. They have the most direct health benefits.


OMEGA 3 FATS IMPROVES PCOS SYMPTOMS by following mechanism

  • Reduces insulin resistance

  • Lower levels of triglycerides especially LDL

  • Improves hormonal profile like testosterone, FSH and LH

  • Regulate menstrual cycle.

  • Reduce depressive symptoms


𝑫𝒊𝒆𝒕𝒂𝒓𝒚 𝒔𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒄𝒆𝒔 𝒐𝒇 𝑶𝒎𝒆𝒈𝒂 3 𝒇𝒂𝒕𝒕𝒚 𝒂𝒄𝒊𝒅𝒔 Oily fish such as sardine, salmon and mackerel are the best sources of EPA and DHA. White fish and shell fish contain some omega fats but in smaller amounts. People who wish to avoid seafood sources can meet their requirements using plant based sources like:

  • Falx seeds,

  • Hump seeds

  • Chia seeds

  • Walnuts

  • Beans

  • Avocado

  • Leafy greens

  • Edamame beans

  • Spinach

  • Winter squash

  • Berries


TAKE HOME MESSAGE

It is backed by scientific evidence that omega 3 fatty acids may be a novel therapy for PCOS. it is always best to get your nutrients from foods rather than supplements. If you are vegan/ vegetarian you can take supplements.

Fish oil and Algae omega 3 fats supplements could be useful for women with PCOS, however, always speak with your GP or nutrition professional before taking these supplements.





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