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Definition of «Essential fatty acid»

Essential fatty acid: An unsaturated fatty acid that is essential to human health, but cannot be manufactured in the body. There are three types of essential fatty acids (EFAs): arachnoidic acid, linoleic acid, and linolenic acid. When obtained in the diet, linoleic acid can be converted to both arachnoidic and linolenic acid. It is commonly found in cold-pressed oils, and is particularly high in oils extracted from cold-water fish and certain seeds. Recent research has explored the role of EFAs in the nervous system health. Supplementation with certain EFOs appears to be useful as a treatment for certain neurological disorders. However, arachnoidic acid may lower the seizure threshold. For that reason, always consult a knowledgeable physician before starting a program of EFA supplementation.

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