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OMEGA 3 and Dry Eye

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Have you been experiencing dry eyes? Omega 3 supplementation has been proven to be very important in improving our dry eyes and improve tear function.

The three important omega-3 fatty acids include1:

  • ⮚ DHA (docosahexaenoic acid)
  • ⮚ EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid)
  • ⮚ ALA (alpha-linolenic acid)

DHA and EPA are both found in fish oils while ALA is found in nuts, flax seed and vegetable oils. The body converts ALA into DHA and EPA but is limited1.

Health Canada recommends at least 2 servings of fish per week including salmon, mackerel, sardines, herring, Arctic Char, anchovies and trout (all great sources of EHA and DPA). A diet rich in omega-3 has been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease, high cholesterol, rheumatoid arthritis and dementia1.

Many North American diets are high in omega-6 fatty acids versus omega 3. We must reduce our intake of fried and fatty foods which are rich in omega-6 fatty acids and increase the inflammation in our bodies. Having a better balance between omega 6 and omega 3 fatty acids will help to reduce inflammation in the tear film and help improve dry eye disease. The ideal ratio is 1:1.

There are several brands and derivatives of omega-3 available which can be very confusing. Our daily nutrition plays a vital role in maintaining our eye health and a supplement does not replace a healthy diet. It’s recommended to have approximately 1500 mg – 2200 mg of EHA and DPA per day. The triglyceride form of omega absorbs better in our bodies and also tastes better.

Speak to our Stoney Creek optometrists today to learn about which form of omega-3 is recommended along with other tips to improve your dry eye disease.

Call now to book your appointment with one of our stoney creek eye doctors at 289 309-1090

1. Capogna, L., & Pelletier, B. (2011). Eyefoods: a food plan for healthy eyes. Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON: LB Media Concepts.

Written by Dr. Casthoory Viswanathan

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