Did you know that omega-3 DHA is your brain’s favorite food?
Studies of primitive man show their brain growth depended on the amount of omega 3-DHA fatty acids in their food. The evolutionary record demonstrates that the ancestors of modern humans that migrated from Africa, between 40,000 to 100,000 years ago, lived along lakes and rivers. They ate fish and shellfish that provided large amounts of omega-3 DHA.
Omega-3 DHA is believed to be an important factor in the growth of the size and complexity of their brains. Compared to extinct Neanderthals and other hominids, the increased rate of our homosapien ancestor’s brain growth resulted in survival advantages and complex cultural behaviors such as tool making and language.
Docosahexaenoic acid, otherwise known as DHA, is one of the two omega-3 fatty acids in fish or shellfish. DHA is found within the membranes of all cells in your body with the greatest concentration being within neurons of your brain.
To understand the importance of DHA in brain development, consider that half of a woman’s entire DHA supply is transferred to her baby during the third trimester of pregnancy. This transfer gives her baby a 1 year supply of DHA which is what her baby needs for proper brain development.
Our brain’s need for DHA lasts a lifetime. Unfortunately, the average American diet contains inadequate amounts of DHA. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommended two servings of seafood per week (4 oz. each) to provide adequate intakes of DHA as well as EPA, another omega-3 fatty acid. But most of the meat we regularly consume (beef, pork, fish, and chicken) are grain fed and contain almost no DHA at all.
The food we feed an animal determines the DHA we will ultimately feed ourselves. Meat and eggs from pasture-fed or wild animals contains significantly higher proportions of DHA and EPA than meat from domesticated animals, even if those domesticated animals are “free-range” or organically-reared.
Insufficient DHA in our diets is now being linked with a variety of neurological illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder, PTSD, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease. There is also strong evidence of the benefits of DHA supplementation in the prevention of primary and secondary heart disease.
Look at the quality of your food and when possible add wild fish or grass-fed beef to your menu. If cost is a factor, be sure everyone in the household is supplementing with a high-quality fish-based omega-3 supplements.
Fish oil is forever because DHA is your brain’s favorite food. You want to eat DHA like a homosapien so that your brain does not function like a Neanderthal.
I am a scientist physician who uses all available scientific and medical tools to induce the nervous system and organs to actually repair themselves by normalizing inflammation control mechanisms, inducing natural stem cell production, and re-activating innate restorative mechanisms.
For more information you may call my office at 623-208-4226 or go to my website www.DrBuckeye.com.
© 2016. Dr. Patrick M. Nemechek and Jean R. Nemechek. All Rights Reserved.
Hi Dr.Nemcheck, I am new to the protocol.My daughter is 3 years Old and am on the protocol for 1 month and continuing,still do not see any significant gains.She has too much oral sensory problems and Non-verbal,no focus at all. During my daughters Initial ASD evaluation last year we had done EEG and MRI. In EEG we found out that her brain activity is abnormal ( Right now there are no visible seizures,she is fine ) and her Neuro prescribed Keppra along with Vitamin B6 so it can reduce her changes of possible seizures in future. Can I start the… Read more »
Follow the neurologist’s recommendatiion and continue the protocol.
Dr. Nemechek, regarding your recommendation of high dose DHA (3000 mg.) as part of the adult protocol, what do you think of this statement by a well-known omega three scientist, “This is why if you use high-dose DHA it is essential to add back trace amounts of GLA to maintain sufficient levels of DGLA to continue to produce anti-inflammatory eicosanoids”? In your opinion, is it necessary to add back GLA through something like small amts of evening primrose oil or borage oil? Thank you, Annie
I am not aware of the statement but from a practical standpoint, I don’t find the addition of GLA necessary.
Hi Dr. Nemechek,
Love all your work. Thanks for everything you’ve done. I’m about to start the protocol and am curious what made you say that it’s a fact we need 3000 mg DHA a day. Any studies? So it’s good to take 6 of the NOW 500 DHA capsules a day?. Thanks for yiour time
In my personal research I am not about to achieve any substantial recovery of autonomic function with less than 3000 mg of DHA in adults. This is based on objective assessments via spectral analysis.
From a more clinical perspective, I cannot get patients wit substantially recover from severe depression, post-concussion syndrome, PTSD, CTE (pro football players), Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s with less than 3,000 mg of DHA as well.
A boy aged 13 years, non-verbal, autistic, two months on the protocol (1tsp inulin, Now DHA 500×3 ,15ml olive oil), yesterday ,after five years he had an epi attack lasting a few minutes (cramps, cramp, blue face … ) diazepam rectiol solves the problem. Now he’s fine. He is taking medicine lamotrigine 50 + 50. My question is how to use the protocol for further? Thank in advance. Dragan Suleic
I would think the protocol had any bearing on this happening.
I would have him re-evaluated by your neurologist.
Hi! I’m new to the protocol and I’m just reading the site and blog at the moment. I am very impressed with the results of the protocol but I also have doubts whether this will fit my child. My 11y.o. is well-behaved calm and happy girl but she has uncontrolled seizures for the last 10 years, mild intellectual disability and nonverbal. She is on daily and gluten free diet for about 7 years, was on biomed protocol for 5-6 years and still takes basic vits and minerals. Her digestive system is much better, now there are no any symptoms to… Read more »
The protocol can reduce pro-inflammatory cytokine levels within the brain. This helps children recover from brain injury as well as the features of autism and development delay. A reduction of pro-inflammatory cytokines within the CNS can also reduce frequency of seizures in some cases. I have had some children become seizure-free with this protocol but others may have improvement in their developmental issues and ADD but no change in seizure frequency. All that being said, we are talking about adding fish oil, olive oil and a fiber commonly found in onions and garlic to your child’s diet. Relatively harmless with… Read more »
Hello ! Do I get the same benefits in brain nutrition with DHA obtained from omega 3 algae?
What is the max dose of omega 3 for a small child with apraxia/asd? They are around 20kg
No one really knows but the tolerance is probably pretty high when you consider how much eskimos might consume.
read my my updated autism guide for more info on the topic.
Hi Dr. Nemechek, I’ve been checking out your blog posts for awhile and I believe for the past couple months I have been experiencing gastric motility issues due to a dysfunction in my Autonomic Nervous system. Of course if I were to say that to a doctor, they would look at me like I’m crazy. For awhile I thought I might have reactive hypoglycemia until reading this, which better describes what has been happening. I was just wondering, could early satiety/lack of appetite also be a symptom of this? I find it very difficult to finish a full sized meal… Read more »
Early satiety (poor emptying of the stomach) is commonly an autonomic problem, and can easily cause weight loss. Your stomach won’t empty as well and that is why the baking powder (sodium bicarbonate) helps reduce the acid
Great article Dr. Nemachek! I’ve never really considered the importance of DHA. I always gain knowledge from your writings. I graduated UMKC with a Bachelor Degree in Sociology and a Minor in Gerontology earning the Tomich Award. Good stuff! HIV still well controlled but kidney function is bad. I start dialysis class this month and an also getting a fistula so it will be ready when needed.
Hope you are well and keep on writhing!!
Nice to hear from you. Sorry about the kidneys. Ramp up on the DHA to 3,000 mg per day along with the 2 tbsp of Calif EVOO. It should greatly drop the inflammation, and could boost renal function.