MENU

Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) Health Benefits, Uses, Side Effects

Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA)

Properties: Antibiotic, Antioxidant, Anti-inflammatory, Anti-microbial

What is Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA)?

Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) is a type of omega-3 fatty acid.1 Omega-3 fatty acids are a classification of nutrient that are considered essential for the human body.2 They’re used in growth and development as well as brain health.2 Getting too little omega-3 fatty acids in your diet can lead to heart problems, poor circulation, fatigue, dry skin, poor memory, and depression.2 Eicosapentaenoic acid is found in cold-water fish, such as salmon.1 It’s also found in some plant species like wakame, a seaweed often used in Japanese cooking.3 You can also add EPA to your diet through fish oil supplements.1

Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) Uses and Health Benefits

Most people on a Western diet don’t eat enough omega-3 fatty acids, and therefore are usually low on eicosapentaenoic acid.1 Adding EPA supplements to your diet can have many benefits. It helps reduce inflammation, improve heart health, reduce blood pressure, and more.1 Other eicosapentaenoic acid uses include for:

  • Anorexia Nervosa - Taking EPA oral supplements is said to have a positive effect on anorexia nervosa patients.1
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) - EPA may help reduce the symptoms of ADHD because it’s so important in proper brain development.1
  • Colorectal Cancer (Colon Cancer) - EPA is believed to help in the early stages of colorectal cancer.1
  • Depression - EPA supplements may help in combating depression symptoms.1
  • Heart Disease - Eicosapentaenoic acid benefits heart disease patients by lowering blood pressure and triglyceride levels, improving artery health, and reducing the risk of blood clots.1

Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) Side Effects and Precautions

Eicosapentaenoic acid is generally considered safe to consume. However, it’s important to proceed with caution if you are taking supplements. EPA found in normal food amounts is considered appropriate for children, but you should not give EPA supplements to children without talking to their pediatrician first. This can disrupt the balance of fatty acids in their system during the crucial stages of growth.1 Pregnant and nursing women should also take care with EPA since some sources, such as shark and swordfish, can contain high levels of mercury.1 It should be safe for pregnant women to consume fish oil supplements from companies that test for mercury, but it’s always best to talk to your doctor first.1 Getting EPA through fish oil capsules may also result in side effects like upset stomach, belching, and loose stool.1 Talk to your doctor about taking a fish oil supplement if you take blood thinning medications. Eicosapentaenoic acid may interact with aspirin and cyclosporine.4

References

  1. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/eicosapentaenoic-acid-epa
  2. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/omega3-fatty-acids
  3. http://www.herbs2000.com/herbs/herbs_wakame.htm
  4. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement-interaction/possible-interactions-with-eicosapentaenoic-acid-epa

according to CuresDecoded worldwide community Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) Recommended For

Menstrual Problems Effective
Menopause Symptoms Effective
Osteoarthritis Effective
Anorexia Nervosa Effective
Raynaud Syndrome Effective
Depression Effective
Osteoporosis Effective
Heart Disease Effective