Saturday, September 7, 2013

Omega-3 supplements for school children?

While the key time for ensuring a child's optimal brain formation and function is during pregnancy and the early post-natal period, this new study of under-achieving British primary school children brings hope to all those kids who might have missed that particular developmental boat. 

Researchers stated that the DHA supplementation given to those with the lowest circulating levels of DHA and EPA was effective even though it was given outside of the recognised critical period of development. The scientists also stated that the initial levels of omega-3s were so “frighteningly low” that it was no wonder the children were under-performing, adding that the levels were in the area that signified significant cardiovascular risk, boding ill for their future health as adults. 

Fortunately however, supplementation was able to positively impact poor readers, those with short working memory and those children with higher oppositional behaviour and emotional lability. One can only hope that these kids become lifelong takers of supplements and that their parents start feeding them the cold-water fish that are the best source of these essential fatty acids.

And an even more recent research paper from Oxford University suggests that omega-3 supplements can improve sleep quality in children. Find recipes for fabulous high omega-3, fish dinners that kids can help prepare and will enjoy in Healthy Parents, Healthy Toddler

And as an end note to this post, researchers now say that the negative effects of omega-3 deficiency become incrementally worse through consecutive generations. Make sure your grandchildren and great grandchildren can't blame you for being poor readers and lousy sleepers!

No comments: