Omega 3s and Beauty
Fish oil is unquestionable proof that real "magic bullets" sometimes do exist.
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
My very first leap-of-faith, life-saving supplement regimen included fish oil, which-combined with alpha-lipoic acid, milk thistle, and probiotics-not only healed my sick liver but also completely transformed my skin and my moods. This was back at the dawn of the 90s, more than a decade before fish oil became known to the general public. Today, there are hundreds of studies on omega-3 oils showing dramatic reductions in everything from anger and anxiety to depression, from risk of sudden heart attack to insulin resistance, and from joint inflammation to bone loss and more recently breast cancer and diabetes.
Transformed Skin and Hair
The effect on my own skin from fish oil all those years ago-and ever since-was nothing short of amazing. Within a couple of months of starting this regimen, my skin literally “forgot” that it had been continually irritated, prone to horrible rashes on my eyes and chin, and unquenchably dry. It forgot that it needed heavy-duty lotions to avoid crawling with discomfort after every bath and shower. The space between my brows, the crannies on the sides of my nose, and my legs all failed to attend to their constant scaling. Dryness and inflammation had “left the building” along with my need for body moisturizers.
My hair was transformed dramatically from my fish oil regimen, too. It went from being super-brittle, coarse, and dull to being glossy and silky. I was able to grow it out long (and have it actually grow downward instead of outward) for the first time since childhood. Beyond the fact that hair is a biological appendage of the skin (which is why people with oily skin have oily hair and people with dry skin have dry hair), there are other possible explanations for fish oil’s effect on the hair. Hair health is particularly vulnerable to hormone imbalances and compromised circulation (many hair loss remedies focus on this). Stress is another cause for hair changes. Because omega-3s and fish oil have been proven to increase circulation, reduce the impact of stress, and help balance hormone activity, they offer proven benefit in each of these contributions to hair health.
Molecularly distilled fish oil supplements are the gold standard and recommended by more and more mainstream, as well as alternative, doctors. Avoid cheap drug store brands. Ironically, getting all your fish oil from fish could give you unwanted outcomes unless you are careful about avoiding mercury, as high mercury levels not only contribute to heart problems but are also known to cause hair loss. In order to get the omega-3s you are after, be sure to eat wild fish. I take a supplement that also contains GLA, an anti-inflammatory omega-6 fat found in hemp seeds and oil, evening primrose oil, and even more plentifully in borage seed oil. GLA has been shown to improve inflammatory skin conditions, such as psoriasis and eczema.
Nordic Naturals Arctic Cod Liver Oil softgels in Lemon Flavor are some of the best-tasting fish oils I’ve found. In fact, Nordic won a “Best Taste” award.
Jarrow Formulas PhosphOmega Krill Oil features Neptune Krill Oil. It is high in omega-3s and supports nerve, brain and joint function, healthy skin, and even PMS issues.
Nutiva Organic Hemp Protein + Fiber features super-healthy and omega-rich hemp protein in a low-glycemic, tasty shake. Also try: Nutiva Hemp Seeds.