The joining of your body’s electrical wires is left to mother nature. Many times, the healing process is less than perfect, leaving long term pain, weakness and muscle paralysis.
Researchers from Queen Mary University of London have discovered a high dose of omega-3 fatty acids, is the key to speeding up nerve healing.
Omega-3 acts like nerve glue in the lab
Stretching isolated nerve cells in a dish or starving them of oxygen, quickly causes nerve cells to give up the ghost. In the laboratory, a large dose of omega-3 fatty acids is able to help nerve cells pull through the rough treatment.
Unfortunately, lots of things that work in the laboratory, don’t work quite as well inside the body.
So, the London based research team set out to test the nerve saving ability of high levels of omega-3 fatty acids in injured laboratory mice.
Sciatic nerve flare ups extinguished
The team opted to boost the supply of omega-3 through a little genetic tinkering. Instead of feeding the animals extra omega-3, they relied on the animals’ ability to make omega-3, this type of omega-3 is known as endogenous omega-3.
The team crushed the sciatic nerve in two different types of mice.
- The one group of mice, had lots of the fat-1 gene, which ensured that these mice were able to make lots of omega-3 fatty acids and a lot less omega-6.
- The other group of mice did not have extra copies of the fat-1 gene, so they had to do with normal levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
The mice with the better omega-3 to omega-6 ratio, recovered from the sciatic nerve injury a lot quicker and a lot better. The omega-3 loaded mice also showed less muscle wasting following the injury.
Don’t need a fat-1 gene
This research supports the idea that higher omega-3 levels help glue nerves back together.
Fortunately you don’t need a super charged version of the fat-1 gene to use the omega-3 glue. The ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 is influenced by what you eat. Eating lots of fishy foods is one way to give your omega-3 levels a rise, but if you really want to boost your omega-3 levels then you should consider a supplement.
NOTE : The supplement must contain only omega-3 fatty acids. Buying a supplement with omega-3 and omega-6 won’t do the trick.
Don’t just stick it, omega-3 it
If your peripheral nerves need a little help reconnecting because of an injury or due to a neuropathy, then don’t just leave it to chance that they will stick back together, apply a little omega-3 glue.
Don’t just stick it, omega-3 it !
PS. Omega-3 is pretty good for more than just peripheral nerves – it can help takes the edge off alcohol cravings and may ward off Alzheimer’s too, so keep your nerves connected and firing on all cyclinders by getting lots of omega-3 in you.Improved Outcome after Peripheral Nerve Injury in Mice with Increased Levels of Endogenous Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids. The Journal of Neuroscience (2012), 32(2): 563-571. Stacy J Gladman, Wenlong Huang, Siwe-Na Lim, Simon C Dyall, Sophie Boddy, Jing X Khang, Martin M Knight, John V Priestley and Adina T Michael-Titus.
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