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What are Omega 7 Fatty Acids?


By +Rachel Berman on Jun 12, 2013 04:00 PM in Healthy Eating

Move over omega 3's, omega 7's are now in the fatty acid research spotlight. While you’re probably well aware of how omega 3's from fatty fish, nuts and seeds can do your body good, I’m betting you know less to nothing about omega 7's. Let me break it down for you.

Omega 7's are monounsaturated fatty acids. That means, the carbon thread is not completely tied to (or saturated with) hydrogen. There’s one (mono) unsaturated carbon and the double bond between carbons occurs at the 7th carbon molecule, hence the name. Omega-3s comes at the 3rd molecule (surprise!).

Omega 7's are non essential, meaning our body can make them. However they’re also found in foods like cold-water fish, macadamia nuts, and a fruit called sea buckthorn berries. Conversely, omega 3's are essential, meaning our body cannot produce them and it's necessary we get 'em from food.

The omega 7 which has been researched lately for it’s health benefits is known as palmitoleic acid. Although commonly found in foods together, don’t confuse this with palmitic acid. The latter is found in palm oil, some dairy and meats, and has been shown to be pro-inflammatory, associated with increasing your risk for heart disease and diabetes. On the other hand palmitoleic acid seems to do the exact opposite and reduce inflammation (on a more science-y level, lower C-reactive protein levels).

So if they aren’t essential and often found alongside something which may not be desirable, why should you care?

Research shows, mostly in animals to date, that when subjects are given a purified form of the palmitoleic acid, they experience reduced cholesterol, triglycerides and even body weight. Researchers speculate this has to do with improved insulin response resulting in better blood glucose control which can lower risk of developing diabetes and obesity too.

I’m not telling you to go out and eat a boatload of macadamia nuts. Although research shows that foods like macadamia nuts can help your cholesterol levels too even with the palmitic acid present.  However, what is intriguing is that omega 7 supplements are made from the leftovers from omega 3 extraction from fish. And in light of recent research showing that omega 3 supplements are not as good as fish for heart disease prevention, maybe omega 7 is the key to why that is.  

 

Let us know

Have you heard of omega 7's? What's your take?

 



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Comments


The least you could do is spell macadamia correctly!



Thank you for informing us regarding Omega 7 (we don't really mind spelling mistakes). However please tell me what is the difference between Omega 6 and Omega 7.



@smamatis, Omega 6 is a polyunsaturated fat and Omega 7 is a monounsaturated fat. Omega 3s are also polyunsaturated. Has to do with how many carbon atoms there are, as explained in the article.

I'd never heard the term "Omega 7" but am very familiar with the term monounsaturated. I suppose there are more monounsaturated fats besides Omega 7s, but I know monounsaturated fats are the main kind of fat found in olive oil and peanut butter.



I have been taking Omega 7 in a capsule form.  My health food store started carrying them about a couple of months ago.  I am on my second bottle but I haven't had my cholesterol checked yet.  It will happen on my cardiologist visit next month.



Purified Omega 7 is heart healthy Palmitoleic Acid without the anagonistic Palmitic Acids. You can get a free box of Omega 7 Supplements at http://www.cardia7.com



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