(NaturalNews) There has been a great deal of interest in fish oils in the media in the past couple of decades. It is currently added to a smattering of foods that are available at the supermarket. In addition, fish oil supplements seem to be on every pharmacy shelf these days. There is good reason for this proliferation of fish oil products, particularly when it comes to its effects on kids.
Start in the womb
The element in fish oil that are so treasured, omega-3, has been added to infant formulas for a number of years. Since the brain is made primarily of fatty cells, it simply makes sense that it is highly important for the proper functioning of a child's brain that it receives the right amounts of these building blocks of intelligence. Studies continuously back up this claim as well.
One such study showed that babies whose mothers consumed cereal bars containing 300mg of DHA five times each week scored significantly higher on problem solving tests when they were nine months old compared to those babies whose mothers ate a placebo bar. Parents who want to ensure that their children continue to reap the rich benefits of having DHA should also ensure that the child is breast fed.
Cuts down on behavior problems
Dr. Alex Richardson, an Oxford University based neuroscientist, found, during her recent trials, that many children with ADHD tendencies, as well as dyslexia, showed decreases in both anxiety and their disruptive behaviors, as well as a greater ability to concentrate. She noted these results after the children had been consuming fish oil for three months. Though she admits that she, as well as other scientists, do not quite understand how such fish oils help the brain, it is clear that they do so.
Getting fish oils naturally
The best method to have a child enjoy the benefits of fish oil is to include fish in the diet. The ideal fish to consume is one that dwells in cold waters, such as sardines or wild caught Pacific salmon. Parents should aim to have their child consume at least two or three servings of this type of fish on a weekly basis.
Not all supplements are alike
Of course, not every child enjoys eating fish so fish oil supplements are available for those who are reluctant to do so. Dr. Richardson cautions parents to choose their supplements wisely. While shopping, parents should look for supplements that feature greater amounts of EPA rather than DHA. In additional to often being a better value, the EPA has a tendency to work better. Some supplements also mask the fishy taste that is sometimes offensive to the palates of children.
Given the literature currently available on the benefits of fish oil for children, it makes sense to ensure that they consume the recommended dosage on a daily basis.