The use of Omega 3/6/9 oils to combat mental health problems such as anxiety and depression have been well documented of late. But unfortunately there is still some confusion with many people not getting the benefits they are hoping for. It is thought that depression, anxiety and panic could all be lessened by the use of omega oils.
In order to get relief from anxiety through taking omega oils several factors are needed.
Firstly, the right dose is important. Secondly the ratio of the oils is important, and thirdly the length of treatment.
It is a minefield trying to work out how much omega oils to take. There are numerous studies which discuss this and the results can be confusing, but basically it seems that omega 3 is normally the oil which is lacking from the diet and that this can be addressed through dietary changes and supplementation. The two key ingredients of omega 3 are EPA and DHA. EPA seems to be the more important and about 1 gram per day of EPA is considered to be the right amount. It is also clear that more isn’t necessarily better.one study found that those on 1 gram did better than those on 4 grams (in an experiment tackling depression), so there is no point or benefit in overdosing. Labels on omega 3 containing supplements are highly misleading, with manufacturers often proclaiming their products to be “high strength”. This is often rubbish. It is important to seek out the few products on the market that offer reasonable doses of EPA and take enough to get 1 gram a day. This is almost impossible when a supermarket brand might contain say only 35mg of EPA (you would need to take almost thirty doses at once!). So check the label before you buy! I would also take the oil twice a day with meals.it is apparently better absorbed over two doses.
The ration of Omega 3 to 6 in your diet is important. Again, there is not an agreed figure but a ration of 2:1 omega 6 to omega 3 is probably fine. A omega 6:3 ration of 20:1 is not uncommon but totally unhealthy (omega 6 is far too available in modern diets compared to omega 3). You can buy supplements which have this ratio built in, and this makes life easier.
Length of treatment is hard to define, but if anxiety or depression have been major factors in your life then you can well expect three to six months to pass before you feel results, which will creep up on you slowly. Some people claim to have seen results in just a few weeks, everyone is different after all. The brain is using these oils to rebuild and replenish, which is a slow task! However much research seems very promising!