McCalla Eyecare Center

McCalla Eyecare Center

4817 McAdory School Road
McCalla, Alabama 35111
(205) 425-1323

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Office Hours:

Monday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Tuesday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Wednesday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Thursday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Friday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Saturday: 8:00am - 3:30pm
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Omega 3's

Nutrition plays a major, vital role in health. One of the most common nutrition deficiencies in our society is a deficiency in Omega 3's. Probably you have heard about Omega 3's and Omega 6's fatty acids. They are both vital to our well being. Ideally the ratio between Omega 6's and Omega 3's in our diet should be close to 1 to 1. Unfortunately the average ratio of the two in the western diet is closer to 34 to 1.

The Western diet has an abundance of Omega 6. Even though Omega 6 fatty acids are essential to our health, an over abundance of Omega 6 is blamed for many common inflammatory diseases. Fortunately, if we increase Omega 3 consumption the inflammatory tendencies of Omega 6 fatty acids are significantly diminished.

Omegas 3's are most available in cold water fish. They are also available in flax seed oil and in some nuts like walnuts. Unfortunately, most of us don't eat a lot of fish or walnuts and we don't squeeze the oil out of flax seed and drink it. (Some people crush flax seed and sprinkle it on their food, but most of the oil from the crushed flax seed is not utilized by the body.)

Flax seed oil capsules and fish oil capsules are both good sources of Omega 3's. However, flax seed oil is only a good source of Omega 3's if it is fresh. Both heat and time affect the potency of the flax seen oil capsules. Therefore, fish oil capsules are a much more reliable source of Omega 3's. Our current recommendation is to purchase an "enteric coated" capsule. Enteric coated capsules will help prevent the fishy aftertaste or stomach upset that sometimes accompanies non-coated fish oil capsules.

Fish oil capsules should be taken with food that has some fat in it. If you are on a low fat diet, Fish oil will not digest very well, so a spoonful of peanut butter, or a slice of cheese or something else with a little fat in it will help with the digestion of the capsule.

For general nutrition everyone should make sure they consume adequate Omega 3's in their diets. As far as our eye health is concerned, Omega 3's are important in the prevention of macular degeneration and they are very helpful in improving the tear film. Many patients with burning, stinging, watering eyes can benefit from Omega 3's. 1000 to 2000 mg per day of fish oil is usually sufficient. However, the positive effects of Omega 3's are not seen in the short term as much as they are over extended periods of time. It often take months for a patient to notice the beneficial affects of Omega 3,s.

So, unless you eat fish at least 3 times a week, Omega 3 supplementation is a good idea.

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