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The Science Behind Omega 3 Fatty Acids, with Dr. Parris Kidd

Dr Daniel Amen and Tana Amen BSN RN On The Brain Warrior's Way Podcast

In the fourth and final episode in a series with BrainMD Chief Science Officer Dr. Parris Kidd, he and Dr. Daniel Amen give you a comprehensive guide to Omega 3 fatty acids, including what they do in the body, the difference between the DPA and EHA types, whether algae-based mixtures are sufficient, why 98% of the population is deficient, and most importantly, why it’s so important to be part of that other 2%. 

For more information on Omega 3 Power Squeeze from BrainMD, visit https://brainmd.com/omega-3-power-squeeze

 

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Daniel Amen, MD:

Welcome to the Brain Warrior’s Way podcast. I’m Dr. Daniel Amen.

Tana Amen, BSN RN:

And I’m Tana Amen. In our podcast, we provide you with the tools you need to become a warrior for the health of your brain and body.

Daniel Amen, MD:

The Brain Warrior’s Way podcast is brought to you by Amen Clinics, where we have been transforming lives for 30 years using tools like brain SPECT imaging to personalize treatment to your brain. For more information, visit amenclinics.com.

Tana Amen, BSN RN:

The Brain Warrior’s Way podcast is also brought to you by BrainMD, where we produce the highest quality nutraceuticals to support the health of your brain and body. To learn more, go to brainmd.com.

Daniel Amen, MD:          So welcome back. You’re listening to the Brain Warrior’s Way podcast. This week, we’re talking about four new ways to optimize your brain. I’m here with Dr. Paris Kidd, our chief science officer at Brain MD, Ph.D and cell biology from UC Berkeley, Paris is really considered just a world-class scientist, and I’m grateful that he works with us and he helps us formulate new products to optimize your brain and your life. And in this episode, we are going to talk about a brand new product we have called Omega-3 Power Squeeze, which is just so critically important. And at Amen Clinics, we actually did two studies. The first study we did is we took 50 consecutive patients who were not taking Omega-3 fatty acids. 49 of them had suboptimal levels on the Omega-3 index, which has been found to be predictive of heart disease. And we have certainly seen a correlate with brain health issues.

                                           So basically 98% of the population, at least a psychiatric population is deficient in Omega-3 fatty acids and then Paris and I, and Bill Harris and some of our other scientists did a study where we looked at the Omega-3 index and compared SPECT scans, how the brain works in people who had healthy levels and deficient levels of Omega-3 fatty acids, again using the Omega-3 index and significantly lower activity in blood flow in the parahippocampal region, a region known to be involved in mood and memory. A long time ago when I realized I was not fixing [inaudible [00:03:20] medication, and I’m not opposed to psychiatric medication, it’s just never the first thing I think about, I’m like, how do I support nutritionally my patients’ brains? It’s the most metabolic organ in the body and multiple vitamin, because most people don’t have five servings of fruits and vegetables a day, minus the gap Omega-3 fatty acids, and then optimize your vitamin D level.

                                           And so we’ve had Omega-3 power for very long time at Amen Clinics. But what about kids? And what about people who don’t like taking capsules? And that’s where we were able to develop this formulation. No lie, tastes like dessert. It is so wonderful. And in a tablespoon there’s 910 milligrams of EPA and 590 milligrams of DHA. It is one of the most highly concentrated Omega-3 products that tastes great, but Paris, why don’t you tell us about it and why you’re excited about Omega-3 Power Squeeze?

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             Yeah, well, I’m very grateful again, to Jim Springer because we had been wanting a product like this for a long time, and Jim helped us to make the connection to get this beautiful emulsified EPA and DHA, which has no fishy taste or smell, no funny reflux sensation when you swallow it. And which happens to have pretty much exactly the same EPA and DHA profile as the soft gels. So we’re talking 1500, a whole 1500 milligrams of EPA and DHA per tablespoon, and a ratio of 1.5:1 of EPA to DHA, which has emerged as being the most consistently effective for mood and for cognition and for, even for cardiovascular function. And just last week, this huge meta analysis came out, which is a pooling of data from numerous clinical trials. In this case, this meta analysis covered 40 cardiovascular trials with EPA and DHA with more than 135,000 subjects.

                                           And it found that indeed EPA plus DHA had a variety of circulatory and heart benefits. And that the most desirable range of dosing was between 1000 and 2000 milligrams per day. So with 1500 milligrams we’re right in the middle. FDA is not happy on, with people taking more than 3000 milligrams a day, but someone who’s really having trouble could take two tablespoons a day of this, and we would still be within the range. So it’s very clear now that the Omega-3s are real, even the most conservative skeptics now agree that after thousands, literally thousands of studies and hundreds of clinical trials, EPA and DHA are essential for human health. They’re practically vitamins because the body cannot make them efficiently from other dietary Omega-3s. If you want to get enough EPA and DHA, you have to get it either from cold water fish or from dietary supplements.

                                           And we know that in the brain, they’re essential for this fundamental cellular system called membranes, which are not only running around the edge of all of our cells, including the nerve cells, but also make the connections, the synapses between the nerve cells and do a whole range of other important functions in the nerve cells and the nerve cells need EPA and DHA. And this begins at the time of conception when sperm meets egg. And then by the time the brain begins to develop in the fetus, the mother really should be providing the baby with a whole lot more EPA and DHA than the average American woman is getting. And then this need persists through the third trimester when the brain is growing really fast and into birth and after birth during breastfeeding and all the way through life. And it’s clear that in the American population, the average intake is running upwards of 100 milligrams a day when the minimum requirement is now emerging as at least 500 milligrams, probably 1000 milligrams a day. The American Heart Association recommends 1000 milligrams a day.

                                           Now, if a person goes into a drug store and ask for fish oil, they’re very often going to get a product that says fish oil, 1000 milligrams. But when you look at the amount of EPA and DHA in that product, you see that it’s only 300 milligrams. So if you want to get sufficient amounts from a basic fish oil product, you’d have to take at least four of those large soft gels. Whereas with this Omega-3 Power Squeeze liquid, you take one tablespoon, and you’re pretty confident that your Omega-3 index is going to be increasing. If you’re already having cognitive issues, or if you have issues with your heart and circulation, you’re probably better off to take two tablespoons a day of the Omega-3 Power Squeeze.

Daniel Amen, MD:          So Omega-3 is good to support your heart, your skin, your eyes-

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             Everything.

Daniel Amen, MD:          …repair, I started late.

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             Everything because all of our cells have membrane systems, all cells that are known on the planet have membranes and all membranes need EPA and DHA, that’s how fundamental these two nutrients are. And so they’re fantastic for joint health, liver function, kidney function, any organ you can think of needs Omega-3s and yet the population of this country has one of the lowest intakes of any country on the planet.

Daniel Amen, MD:          And what about vegetarians? I get this issue a lot with patients and algae-based EPA and DHA, which is rarely their option is expensive and they generally don’t have concentrated amounts of EPA and DHA. What can they do? In fact, I think you and I should develop a non fish source Omega-3 product, because even though they’re not fish proteins and Omega-3 Power Squeeze, knowing that it comes from fish eliminates that possibility for many vegetarians.

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             I may not be able to convince vegans, but I can tell the vegetarians that there’s no fish antigens remaining. There’s no fish protein, no fish carbohydrates remaining in this concentrate. This material is so highly purified that it’s identical chemical-y to the EPA and DHA that’s made by algae.

Daniel Amen, MD:          So what can we do if we really want to reach our vegan population? Is there anything we can do to really be helpful because I want-

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             We can make a vegan product and we should Daniel, because there are plant oils that are being misrepresented as supplying functional Omega-3s. And this has been a source of frustration to me for decades because the plant oils do not have EPA or DHA. And the body is very inefficient. Some people can’t make the conversion at all. So things like chia and flax are not going to supply sufficient amounts of EPA and DHA. Therefore let’s look forward to making an algae product and offering it to our vegan and vegetarian customers and patients.

Daniel Amen, MD:          Yeah. No, I think that’ll be helpful for them. Well, you’ve just done a great job as always. I am very grateful for you and-

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             You bring out the best in me, Daniel.

Daniel Amen, MD:          I think we’re a good team and I just adore you. And I hope you’re staying safe and healthy during this challenging time. And for all of those that are listening, Paris and I actually have a number of videos. You go to brainmd.com. We want you to be a brain warrior, armed, prepared, and aware to win this fight of your life. And then we want you to go recruit other brain warriors because ultimately what I’ve concluded is the end of mental illness is never going to start until we create revolution in brain health. And many traditional doctors will tell you there’s no science behind natural supplements. That’s completely ridiculous. In my new book, The End of Mental Illness, Paris really helped me with the chapter on mind medicine versus nutraceuticals. We have 286 scientific references on what has a level of scientific evidence to help strengthen and support your brain. So thank you, Paris. So grateful for you, my friend.

Parris Kidd, Ph…:             Yes, Daniel, and I’m honored to be able to help you to be at the beginning of the end of mental illness. Your quarter of a century of work has really moved the entire field of psychiatry in the direction of a comprehensive and non-toxic management of mental illness. And I congratulate you on that.

Daniel Amen, MD:          Thank you so much. You’re listening to the Brain Warrior’s Way podcast, and we’d just be so grateful if you [inaudible [00:15:03] podcast.com, left us a comment, question or review. If you do, we’ll enter you into a drawing to win either a copy of The End of Mental Illness or Tana’s Brain Warrior’s Way Cookbook. We are so grateful for you. If you learned anything this week, please write it down. Take a picture of it, post it on any of your social media sites, hashtag Brain Warrior’s Way podcast.com. See you soon.

Tana Amen:                      If you’re enjoying the Brain Warrior’s Way podcast, please don’t forget to subscribe so you’ll always know when there’s a new episode. And while you’re at it, feel free to give us a review or five-star rating as that helps others find the podcast.

Daniel Amen, MD:       If you’re considering coming to Amen Clinics or trying some of the brain healthy supplements from BrainMD, you can use the code podcast 10 to get a 10% discount on a full evaluation at amenclinics.com or a 10% discount on all supplements at brainmdhealth.com. For more information, give us a call at 855-978-1363.