We are wrapping up our series on Omegas by exploring Omega 7. But, to better understand its benefits, we need to look at the health risks in relation to Metabolic Syndrome, or Syndrome X.

What Is Metabolic Syndrome & What Are Its Symptoms?

In 1989, Kaplan NM, redefined the term “Syndrome X” AKA “Metabolic Syndrome” as “The Deadly Quartet”, which includes the following symptoms:

1. Elevated glucose and insulin resistance.
2. Hyperlipidemia, (high LDLs, triglycerides, and low HDL cholesterol).
3. High blood pressure.
4. Weight around the middle, (“apple shape”).

This combination of symptoms can lead to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other life-threatening disorders. We mentioned the wide-ranging benefits of Omega 3 fatty acids in parts 1-4 of our series on Omegas. Yet you may not be aware of a category of Omega 7 fatty Acids called palmitoleic acid, which provides some unique health effects. Omega 7 addresses many of the underlying factors involved in Syndrome X.

What Causes Metabolic Syndrome?

The specific reasons why people get metabolic syndrome are unidentified. Nonetheless, it is strongly correlated with being inactive, obese, and overweight.

A big part of the syndrome is closely connected to insulin resistance. This is the case when our cells don't react to insulin as they should, causing an improper entrance of glucose into cells. In turn, this leads to higher levels of blood sugar.

Some of the main factors that can lead to insulin resistance include:

- poor physical activity;
- improper diet;
- sleep disorders.

Notably, the older you get, the higher is your risk of having Syndrome X. Those who have too much weight also fall under the "risk" category of getting diabetes (type 2), polycystic ovary syndrome, or fatty liver disease (non-alcoholic).

Metabolic Syndrome Prevention

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a "must" to combat excess weight and prevent or reverse the development of Syndrome X. It is advised to:

- exercise daily (for half an hour minimum);

- quit smoking and drinking alcohol;

- pay attention to your diet (i.e., eat many fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and fish; cut down on salt, meat, and fatty foods;

- make sure to get enough nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids).

Omega 7 Fatty Acid

What is Omega 7? While Omega 3 fatty acids are beneficial largely because of their anti-inflammatory molecules, Omega 7 has an entirely different mechanism of action. Omega 7 fats operate as signaling molecules that facilitate communication between fat and muscle tissue while suppressing the production of new fat molecules, especially those fats that damage tissue and raise cardiovascular risk.

Foods Containing Omega 7 Fatty Acids

Taking Omega 7 may bring many benefits to your health. You can obtain it by taking supplements, most of which contain the extracts of sea buckthorn, an orange berry that originated in China and Russia. Supplements usually contain oil that is made of the plant's berries and seeds.

Apart from sea buckthorn, there are other Omega 7 sources:

- vegetable oils (f.e., olive oils);
- fish oil (such as salmon, anchovy, or cod liver);
- avocado;
- macadamia nuts and oil.

Omega 7 Benefits

1. Reduces insulin resistance and lowers blood glucose.

2. Suppresses fat production and accumulation.

3. Normalizes abnormal lipid profiles (including raising beneficial HDL-cholesterol).

4. Fights obesity.

5. Lowers an inflammation marker called C-reactive protein, which is associated with an increased risk for heart attack and stroke.

Omega 7 Supplements

My favorite, yummy Omega 7 is Heart Remedy by Barlean’s. It has a delicious mixed red berry smoothie taste. It’s made with patented, highly purified provincial premium fish oil, using that proprietary amplified absorption emulsification technology. It has no artificial flavors or colors, no sugar, (naturally sweetened with xylitol). And it’s gluten-free and non-GMO.

If you have any of the four symptoms of Metabolic Syndrome, mentioned above, you should be taking Omega 7.

Heart Remedy by Barlean’s

*Find it at any of our pharmacy locations.