Is Your Child Deficient in Omega-3s?

Omega-3 fatty acids are kind of a big deal. Many people know of their heath benefits in everything from heart health to skin issues, to increased cognitive function and mood balancing (hey, fish is called “brain food” for a reason!). While omega-3s have been an established member of the nutrition scene for some time, we see them showing up increasingly in the media, in advertisements and even on food packaging.

Low levels of omega-3s can be seen in symptoms like skin issues (dryness and eczema), vision problems, behavioural issues, poor wound healing, asthma, and weak immunity, but the effects of low dietary levels of omega-3 aren’t always visible with our kids.

So, with omega-3s enriching everything from eggs to bread – does this mean we are getting enough? Unfortunately, not for most people – and that includes our kids! A recent study that spanned over a decade (2003 – 2014), found that inadequate intake of omega-3 fatty acids can be found among toddlers, children, and adolescents:

  • The total EPA+DHA intake in children 1–5 years old only reached ~40% of the EPA+DHA intake recommended by the IOM for age groups 1–3 years (70 mg/day) and 4–8 years (90 mg/day).
  • In comparison to World Health Organization recommendations, the toddler/early childhood age group reached less than one-quarter of the recommended intake of ~150 mg/day.

So, what does this mean for our kids?

Low levels of omega-3s can sometimes be seen in symptoms that can include skin issues (dryness and eczema), vision problems, behavioural issues, poor wound healing, asthma, and weak immunity, but the effects of low dietary levels of omega-3 aren’t always visible with our kids.

The fact is, omega-3s play a significant role in mental and physical development for kids, and deficiency is a big concern for their overall health and can even affect them later in life. 

Why the gap?

Omega-3s are essential fatty acids – “essential” because we need to consume them through dietary sources. But even with these omega-3 “enriched” food in supermarkets, our diet is lacking in foods that provide good natural sources.

Omega-3 deficiency accompanies other nutritional gaps in the North American diet, dominated by aggressively marketed, processed, convenience foods that hold big appeal for busy families.  There’s also the difficult truth that our foods just aren’t as nutritious as they used to be, due to modern industrial agriculture practices and long-distance shipping.

Plus, there’s the matter of nutritional balance. Evidence suggests that human beings evolved eating omega-6 and -3 fatty acids in a ratio of around 1:1. But modern diets supply us with more omega-6 than we need – and the typical Western diet now provides us with an omega-6 to -3 ratio of around 16:1!

Restoring the balance

One of the BEST sources of omega-3 is fish and certain seafoods, but approximately 84% of children consume less than one serving a week!

Generally, supplementation isn’t the first big go-to with children’s nutrition. Many people turn to omega-3s to help treat a health issue or symptom, rather than for nourishing the body in the spirit of preventative health. But kids are vulnerable to the same dietary gaps as adults (perhaps even more so because of the highly targeted marketing!) and can benefit greatly from omega-3 supplementation.

Finding the right kids omega-3 is a sure-fire way to nourish for these young, growing bodies and brains. The best general omega-3 fatty acid for kids is derived from fish oil with a balance of EPA and DHA,

omega-3 kids + D3 was formulated with the everyday health of kids in mind. One serving provides omega-3 fatty acids in a simple, clean source that provides a balanced source of their daily EPA and DHA – key nutrients in brain, eye and overall development.

To further fortify kids’ health, each serving also contains 600 IU of vitamin D (a valuable vitamin that Canadian children are at risk of not meeting requirements for) and 5.5 mg of lutein as additional support for eye health that works to protect them from the effects of blue light from screen time.

Rest assured, omega-3 kids + D3 is derived from wild-caught fish and sustainable fisheries in Pacific South East and Eastern Central Atlantic that are strictly regulated by government agencies for a fresh, pure and safe omega-3 that is guaranteed based on 3rd party test results.

Last but not least, the yummy cherry flavour makes it simple for your kids to get their daily omega-3 nourishment and love the taste too!

 

The balanced omega-3 formula of omega-3 kids + D3 can help your kids get the most out of childhood – and develop a solid foundation for life-long health.  Learn more about the other ways to nourish your kids with the complete line of Genuine Health-y kids formulas.