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Exclusive Online Expanded Version—The Essential in Fats: A Global Perspective for Healthy Skin Cells

By: Alexandra J. Zani
Posted: March 5, 2014, from the March 2014 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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There may be a genetic link to skin barrier disorders that begin in the womb. It is through the following in-depth consideration that will expose many answers to why the skin reacts the way it does.

The brain. The evolution of the human brain required considerable consumption of calories and nutrients in order to have increased to its present day size. Moreover, the brain required a substantial amount of fats, especially EFAs, that included an elevated amount of n-3 docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) content imperative for memory and thinking. DHA is also found in the eye retina, as well as in postsynaptic neuronal cell membranes that are imperative for nerve and vision function.

The body breaks down the fat in food into fatty acid molecules to become used as raw materials for the lipid-rich cell membranes. Along with the importance of n-3 DHA, fatty acids, adrenic (docosatetraenoic) acid (which is metabolized from n-6 arachidonic acid and omega-9 (n-9) oleic acid are also directly involved with the myelination of nerves in the brain, and have strong associations with temperament in adolescent attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Myelin fiber is a protective coating that covers neurons (nerve cells), and is composed of 30% protein and 70% fat.

“No infant or young child dies of malnutrition without there being an ecological situation which involves maternal nutrition.” –Michael A. Crawford, PhD

Mother and child. One can irrefutably appreciate that the dietary intake of a mother is tantamount to the health of her offspring. Epidemiological research confirms that a low level of n-3 and n-6 during fetal, infant and early childhood development affects neural and visual development. Pregnant and nursing mothers convert larger amounts of n-3 alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in their diet so that it is converted to DHA in order to gift the child with the building blocks required for growth both inside the womb and at the breast immediately after childbirth.