Some new research out of Sweden has found that high levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids found in children's blood may be linked to a reduced risk of allergic reactions such as asthma and rhinitis. These two conditions are incredibly common in children and are seemingly getting more prevalent as time wears on. The risk factors for these issues are said to be both environmental and hereditary.
This study presented information regarding the links between long chain omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids within the blood and how they can potentially thwart these conditions. It was shown that children who had high levels of these types of healthy fatty acids within their blood were less likely to develop these types of conditions by the age of 16. Even for those who did have the condition, when their levels were increased, they had a higher chance of being virtually symptom-free by the age of 16.
Since allergies often debut during childhood it is of particular interest to study if children's environment and lifestyle affect the development of these diseases, says Anna Bergstrom, the lead researcher on the study from the Institute of Environmental Medicine. These new results and those of a previous study we carried out support the current dietary guidelines to eat fish two to three times a week and to vary between oily and lean fish.
This study and its findings speak to how diet can drastically affect our health. While many people think of this truth in terms of cholesterol or weight, diet can positively affect our immune system and the ability for our bodies to fight off conditions that take place in its absence.
The Right Fats
There is another important caveat to add here in that so many people have been told to stay away from fats. Largely, for a very long time, the food and drug industry swore that having a low-fat diet was the best course of action for health reasons. Yet, having a diet high in healthy fats has been proven to have tremendous benefits in many different studies. The issue becomes the unhealthy fats which are often tied to high sugar and carbohydrate content and lead to diseases such as heart disease, high cholesterol, and diabetes.
Gut health is integral in being able to function and keep us healthy and at our very best. This study is simply additional pieces of evidence that healthy fats can help and even prevent conditions largely experienced by people who may be affected by a specific gene type or have found that their bodies cannot fend off certain conditions because their system is compromised for various reasons.
Foods like avocado, salmon, grass-fed butter, coconut oil, nuts and seeds are high in healthy fats and should be consumed in a standard diet. It goes without saying that everyone is different and that health and diet are not a one-size-fits-all type of endeavor. It has been proven over and over again that healthy fats have impressive benefits that cannot be overstated. Whether it's allergies, asthma, or any of the other health condition that seem to plague our society, the positive presence of healthy, polyunsaturated fatty acids can be a tremendous and beneficial tool.