DPA background and advantages
Docosapentaenoic acid (DPA) is one of several long-chain omega-3 fatty acids found in cold water fatty fish. Although its content is lower than its more famous cousins (EPA and DHA), it seems to have many unique characteristics worthy of attention.
The purpose of DPA
Supporting healthy blood clotting is one of the most common reasons for taking DPA. It is also commonly used to support healthy inflammation management and blood vessel function.
Although several fish oil studies have shown that omega-3 supplementation has little effect on cardiovascular results, it may be too early to conclude that considering that the oils used in the research are mainly concentrated in EPA and DHA, and DPA only appeared after the fact.
Higher concentrations of DPA have been shown to actively resolve arterial inflammation, reduce platelet viscosity, lower cholesterol and triglycerides, and reduce the risk of atherosclerosis.
The most abundant dietary source of DPA is oil from bearded seals, which contains 5.6 grams of DPA per 100 grams. Some researchers believe this may be a factor in promoting the overall cardiovascular health of Greenland Intuits. Fatty fish such as herring and salmon are also high in DPA. Each 100 grams of raw salmon oil contains 393 mg of DPA. Atlantic mackerel and Florida mackerel (whose DPA content even exceeds EPA) provide more than 200 mg of DPA per 100 g portion. Small fin tuna is also another good source of DPA.
Laboratory studies have shown that DPA and EPA are easily converted into each other in the liver, so DPA is the precursor of EPA. However, none of these fatty acids seem to be metabolized into docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which is another important omega-3 fatty acid. DPA is also found in many other tissues, especially the heart, kidneys, and skeletal muscle. DPA has many functions in the human body, mainly related to blood health and cell proliferation.
Higher DPA levels are related to improved cognitive function. Omega-3 fats account for a large part of brain capacity. In fact, chronic omega-3 deficiency can cause brain atrophy.
Since many cognitive dysfunctions (dementia, Alzheimer's disease, mood disorders, ADD/ADHD) have been shown to have an inflammatory component, it makes sense that these essential fats play a role in solving these difficulties.
When present in the diet, DPA can be used to resolve intestinal inflammation. Improving the condition of the intestinal lining (epithelial) can reduce the risk of food allergies and malabsorption.
DPA encourages the body to use fat for energy, a process called thermogenesis. Oxidizing fat into energy helps control weight and helps maintain a more stable blood sugar level. DPA itself is not used as an energy source, so it is more stable than EPA and DHA.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also important for normal cell membrane function and can transfer waste and nutrients more efficiently at the cellular level. The more efficient our cells become, the higher our resting metabolic rate. This is important for weight management because our metabolism slows down over time, and our dietary intake rarely decreases at the same rate, which makes us vulnerable to the terrible “middle-age transmission” .
Given that DPA appears to have greater anti-inflammatory potential than EPA or DHA, it is not surprising that drugs are currently being developed to treat a variety of diseases, including elevated triglycerides, chronic inflammation, and cancer.
Although eating fatty fish in cold water may be an ideal way to increase DPA intake, not everyone tends to increase fish intake. Fortunately, if there is no fish on the menu, there is no need to wait for prescription drugs to start reaping the benefits of DPA.
Signs that you may need DPA
Perhaps the most important sign that you need DPA is the condition that restricts your dietary intake of DPA. This mainly includes strict vegetarians and bottle-fed babies. If your diet does not include fish, you may also benefit from DPA. Signs of DPA deficiency include high clotting rate and poor healing.