What does beautiful mean to you?

Is it ‘inner beauty’ such as having a positive mood and a general sense of wellbeing, or is it ‘outer beauty’ such as radiant skin, hair and nails?

Research shows that essential fatty acids (EFA’S) support many aspects of both inner and outer beauty. The human body can manufacture most of the fats it needs, however, omega-3 and omega-6 are the two families of EFA’s that it cannot produce. Therefore, they must be obtained through the diet or supplementation.   EFA’s have been shown to help support a positive mood therefore enhancing one’s ‘inner beauty’.

EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) are key omega-3’s that are best obtained from fish oil. Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) is the key omega-6 that is best obtained from evening primrose oil or borage oil.

A population-based study involving 2,416 adults and adolescents living in New Zealand showed that there was a positive association between higher serum EFA concentrations and both physical and mental well-being.  EFA’s are a main constituent of our cell membranes, including skin, hair and nail membranes, helping many cell functions such as nutrient transport and waste removal from the cell, inflammation regulation, and moisture retention (to name a few).

To aid ‘outer beauty’ and help to create beautiful radiant skin, hair and nails, a healthy cell requires an optimal balance of EPA, DHA and GLA.  A study done on elderly people showed GLA to be useful in reducing the symptoms of those with itchy skin and showed a reduction in epidermal water loss result via the skin.

Some women have noted that GLA has been helpful in relieving premenstrual symptoms (PMS) such as breast tenderness, irritability and fluid retention. Recent research shows that GLA promotes the production of beneficial prostaglandins, which naturally balance a woman’s hormones.

So let’s get the Omega-3 and 6 balance right and get on our way to enhanced inner and outer beauty!