Omega 3 Supplements May Protect Against Hearing Loss
Protecting your customers from hearing loss could be as simple as adding an omega 3 supplement to your product line ! In addition to the long list of established health benefits associated with omega 3 supplements, the latest research indicates that two servings of omega-3 fatty acids (found in fatty fish) could help minimize the risk of age-related hearing loss by up to 42 percent.
In the study conducted by the University of Sydney, scientists collected dietary data of 2,956 participants over the age of 50. Not only was there an inverse association between increased intake of omega-3′s and hearing loss, but findings showed that dietary intervention through omega-3 supplements may also help prevent or slow the progression of age-related hearing loss. 1
What Age Group Is Most Affected By Hearing Loss?
According to the National Health Survey, the most common sensory disorder is hearing loss which affects 40 percent of Americans over the age of 65. Approximately 17 percent of the American adult population suffers from some degree of hearing loss, with men more than women being affected. Hearing loss is also related to your age. The older you are the greater your risk of hearing loss. Hearing impairment occurs in:
- 18 percent of American adults aged 45-64
- 30 percent of American adults aged 65-74
- 47 percent of adults 75 and older
As more baby boomers get older, an estimated 28 million Americans are likely to suffer from hearing loss by the year 2030. Because lifespans have extended, the prevalence of presbycusis or age-related hearing loss is expected to increase as people live longer. 2
How do the Benefits of Omega-3 Supplements affect Hearing?
Age-related hearing loss occurs due to the loss of nerves, sensory hair and membrane cells inside the inner ear. Scientists at the University of Florida along with four other institutes have identified a particular protein dubbed Bak that appears to trigger the process of oxidative damage of cells in the auditory portion of the inner ear. Bak is produced in response to oxidative stress and triggers a reaction that is believed to result in the death of hearing-related cells. Scientists suggest that loss of hearing may occur because of this oxidative damage. Since the older you are, the more exposed you have been to pollutants, chemicals, drugs, processed foods, the more oxidative stress the body has undergone. Bak is therefore more prevalent in older people. Boosting the body’s defenses with antioxidants may help to mitigate oxidative damage and support hearing. 3
How do omega-3 fatty acids play a role in hearing? Scientists believe these fatty acids help to protect cell life by slowing down cell aging. The lifespan of a typical cell is linked to its telemores. With each cell replication, the telemores become shorter, and when they are totally consumed, the cell is destroyed (apostosis). Studies show that telemores are vulnerable to oxidative stress. Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, found that people, who had the highest average blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids in the blood, experienced the slowest rate of telemore shortening; whereas people who had low levels of omega 3 fatty acids, experienced the fastest rate of telemore shortening. While the potential mechanisms cannot yet be fully explained, scientists purport that omega-3 fatty acids help protect cells from oxidative damage, thus increasing cellular lifespan and functionality of an organ. 4
Manufacture High-Quality Omega 3 Supplements With Nutricap Labs
Are baby boomers taking more omega-3 supplements to support hearing? There is no data available that would indicate this, but for several years the benefits of omega-3 supplements have made it a stellar nutrient of the nutraceutical industry. The health benefits of omega-3 supplements are numerous and have been widely publicized and according to surveys conducted by ConsumerLab.com, more consumers are taking omega-3 supplements making it the most popular consumer choice, beating multivitamin use by 2 percent. It won’t be long before consumers come to know another new associated benefit of omega-3 supplements which could improve their chances for better hearing as they age. Just one more great reason to add a high-quality omega-3 supplement to your product line!
Ready to launch a brand new omega 3 supplement or tweak your existing formula? Call (800) 494-6154 now to speak to one of our Production Specialists today or submit your request to receive a free supplement manufacturing quote in 48 hours.
1. “Consumption of omega-3 fatty acids and fish and risk of age-related hearing loss,” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2010.29370.
2. Quick Statistics Compiled by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) - http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/statistics/Pages/quick.aspx
3. Escaped Proteins Add to Hearing Loss in Elderly, University of Florida - http://news.ufl.edu/archive/2009/11/escaped-proteins-add-to-hearing-loss-in-elderly-uf-researchers-found.html
4. Association of Marine Omega-3 Fatty Acid Levels With Telomeric Aging in Patients With Coronary Heart Disease, Journal of the American Medical Association 2010, Volume 303, Issue 3, Pages 250-257