Health Benefits

The Benefits of DHA

DHA omega-3 is naturally found throughout the body and is most abundant in the brain, eyes and heart. Just as calcium is essential for building strong bones, DHA ensures that the cells in the brain, eyes, heart and other parts of the nervous system develop and function properly through all stages of life.

DHA for Brain Health

DHA is a structural fat, making up approximately 30% of the structural fats in the gray matter of the brain and 97% of the total omega-3s in the brain.

Studies have shown that DHA plays a role in various functions and at different times in life (depending on the regions, some health claims are authorized):

  • Infant cognitive development
    • Brain and nervous system development and function (authorized in the European Union (EU) “docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) maternal intake contributes to the normal brain development of the fetus and breastfed infants”
    • Supporting brain health of children and adults throughout life (authorized in the EU “DHA contributes to maintenance of normal brain function”)
  • Possible role for DHA in some behavioral and mood disorders affecting both children and adults

DHA for Eye Health

DHA is a major structural fat in the retina of the eye and it plays an important role in both infant visual development and visual function throughout life.

Studies have shown that DHA plays a role in:

  • Infant visual function and visual development (authorized in the EU “docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) intake contributes to the normal visual development of infants up to 12 months of age” and “docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) maternal intake contributes to the normal development of the eye of the fetus and breastfed infants”
  • DHA may play a role in adult eye health (authorized in the EU “DHA contributes to the maintenance of normal vision”

DHA for Heart Health

DHA is a key component of heart health, in large part because it is found in abundant levels in heart tissue. As a result, DHA is important for heart health throughout life.*

Studies have shown that DHA plays a role in:

  • Maintaining normal triglyceride levels, heart rate and blood pressure (authorized in the EU “DHA contributes to the maintenance of normal blood triglyceride levels,” “EPA and DHA contribute to the normal function of the heart” and “DHA and EPA contribute to the maintenance of normal blood pressure”)

In addition, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reviewed the available data regarding the relationship between DHA and EPA and cardiovascular disease and has authorized the use of the following claim:

“Supportive but not conclusive research shows that consumption of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. One serving of [Name of the food] provides [x] gram of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids.”

All EU authorized health claims can only be used if the product is compliant with the provisions set in the Regulation 1924/2006 including the specific conditions of use related to each claim.

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