It is crucial to include essential fatty acids (EFA’s) in your diet as the body does not produce or store them, so we need a regular supply from foods and supplements. There are two types of EFA’s: omega 3 (anti-inflammatory) and omega 6 (generally considered more inflammatory). Omega 6 is available through the modern diet to a greater extent, but Omega 3 is more limited – It is often a good idea to supplement as many people are deficient in these valuable fats. It is important to achieve a good balance of Omega 6 and 3. An ideal ratio is 3:1. In the western diet the ratio can be 15:1 or higher. Functions of Essential Fatty Acids Cell Membranes - EFA’s are part of the structure of every cell in the body and are important for flexible cell membranes and the proper functioning of cells. We need EFA’s to maintain a healthy heart, brain, eye function, skin, joints and hair. Also, for blood clotting, the immune system & oxygen transport. Hormones – EFAs are converted into prostaglandins which regulate many important functions in the body including inflammation, nerve transmission, heart function, and fluid balance. Brain development – The brain contains a high concentration of fatty acids and is particularly high in DHA, from fish. Adequate levels are crucial for the rapid brain and neural development that occurs in early infant life.