Monday, 24 March 2014

6 Facts about Cosmetics Regulation

10 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sexy Readers,

I know a lot of you are very worried about beauty products and in particular the controls behind them. We want them to be safe to make sure that any allergic reaction or sensitization effect can be identified.
So here are a  few facts on cosmetics regulations:
"Responsible manufacturers invest their reputation in their brands, building trust with loyal customers and relying on customer satisfaction for their success. Such companies are not going to jeopardise that by selling unsafe or unsatisfactory products."  Excerpt from HERE

1. In the US, Cosmetics regulation is ruled by the FDA (Food and Drug administration) agency part of the US department of Health and Human Services and has been established to protect and promote consumer's health. They also regulate other things such as food, drugs, vaccines, etc...! They are not in charge of the testing but its authority includes the banning or restriction of ingredients for safety reasons (see below for a list). 
In Europe, regulation is implemented by a committee from the European commission. The latest document was applied in July last year 2013 and refers to the '1223/2009' amendment of the last 2008 regulations. The UK also complies to it and is reviewed by the "Cosmetic Products Regulation". The full document can be viewed HERE.


2. In the US, The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR), an independent, scientific review board, critically evaluates chemical ingredients used in cosmetics and publishes the results of its findings in the peer-reviewed literature. 
Note for Skeptics: " Health-related allegations about cosmetic ingredients are generally based on the results of high-dose laboratory testing in animals and have little relevance for humans. As true now as when Paracelsus said it in the 16th century, “It is the dose that makes the poison.” . Animal and human physiology differ in crucial ways, further invalidating simplistic attempts to extrapolate rodent testing to human health risks. The cosmetic industry should be encouraged to publish more of its toxicity studies and safety evaluations, which would aid in dispelling the uncertainty that some consumers have about cosmetic safety. " Excerpt from HERE

3.  In the US, FDA has consistently advised manufacturers to use whatever testing is necessary to ensure the safety of their products and ingredients, which do not need FDA premarket approval, with the exception of color additives. Under the law, manufacturers are not required to register their cosmetic establishments or file their product formulations with FDA, they are encouraged to participate in FDA's Voluntary Cosmetic Registration Program (VCRP) using an online registration system.
In Europe, The document (EC) 1223/2009 clarifies the role of a ‘responsible person’ and a distributor in ensuring compliance with the relevant obligations, it requires all cosmetic products to be notified to the European Commission rather than to national authorities and more clearly describes the product information file. It also introduces a concept of Serious Undesirable Effects, which have to be reported, and defines nanomaterials, which also have to be reported. 


4. In general, except for color additives and those ingredients that are prohibited or restricted by regulation, a manufacturer may use any ingredient in the formulation of a cosmetic, provided that:
  • the ingredient and the finished cosmetic are safe under labeled or customary conditions of use,
  • the product is properly labeled, and
  • the use of the ingredient does not otherwise cause the cosmetic to be adulterated or misbranded under the laws that FDA enforces.


5. In the US, the FDA regulations prohibit or restrict the use of several ingredients in cosmetic products and require warning statements on the labels of certain types of cosmetics.
In Europe, The Regulation (EC) 1223/2009 document also lists restricted and banned substances, and provides positive lists of preservatives, colorants and UV filters (LIST OF SUBSTANCES WHICH MUST NOT FORM PART OF THE COMPOSITION OF COSMETIC PRODUCTS (UNLESS OTHERWISE SPECIFIED)

6. In the US, as well as in Europe/UK, regulatory action can be taken if reliable information indicating that a cosmetic is adulterated or misbranded is gathered; an action can be pursued through its respective Department of Justice to remove this cosmetic from the market. Cosmetics that are not in compliance with the law may be subject to seizure which means that the government takes possession of property from someone who has violated the law, or is suspected of doing so. FDA also may initiate criminal action against a person violating the law.

Additional Notes: FDA can and does inspect cosmetic manufacturing facilities to assure cosmetic product safety and determine whether cosmetics are adulterated or misbranded under the FD&C Act or FPLA. Also, the FDA collect samples for examination and analysis as part of cosmetic facility inspections, import inspections, and follow-up to complaints of adverse events associated with their use. FDA may also conduct research on cosmetic products and ingredients to address safety concerns. FDA does not function as a private testing laboratory, and in order to avoid even the perception of conflict of interest, they do not recommend private laboratories to consumers or manufacturers for sample analysis.


Are you worried about cosmetics safety? Is there something I haven't covered, let me know in the comments, I'll try to dig up some more info for you. In writing this post, I stumbled upon this amazing website that is all about regulations, scare stories, chemicals in cosmetics etc.. I think if you are worried, do check it out. I hope that, like me, you feel reassured that our cosmetics are checked out by the proper authorities.

In the meantime, if you are interested to know more about chemicals in make up or shampoos, do check out SSS previous posts.

See you Soon for more Sexy Science,






All references have been inserted as links, please hover your pointer to the relevant sections and click on them to be redirected to the websites.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Did you Know? How does the Antibiotic Amoxicillin work?

6 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sexy Readers,

I bet if you have lived in the UK for most of your life, you have only known a few antibiotics in your life (hopefully), and most notably Amoxicillin. Why is it always that one that GP prescribe? How does it work?

How does Amoxicillin work?
Amoxicillin is what we call a β-Lactam antibiotic (fig.1). Most β-lactam antibiotics work bystopping the production of the "peptidoglycan" layer of bacterial cell walls (See figures 2 and 3 here below). This cell wall layer is important for structural integrity (fig3), especially in "Gram-positive" bacteria (fig.2), because it is the outermost and primary component of the wall. The last step in this "peptidoglycan" chain production is supervised by an Enzyme abbreviated PBP. A β-Lactam antibiotic is similar in structure to the last building block of the cell wall, taking its place in the structure. Because the PBP enzyme recognises it as if it was a proper brick, the Antibiotic inhibits the completion of the cell wall construction, therefore making the bacteria unviable and starting a process of auto-destruction. Some bacteria have changed themselves to  make themselves resistant, either by attacking the β-Lactam ring of the antibiotic (fig.1) which is essential for the recognition with the PBP enzyme, or by modifying PBP so it's less sensitive to the antibiotics (like MRSA has).
Figure 1: The Beta-Lactam antibiotic with its Beta-Lactam ring (the square!)

Figure 2: The difference between Gram + and Gram - bacteria. Look out for the Peptidoglycan layer.
Figure 3: How the Peptidoglycan wall builds up
If you are interested in more fast read sexy facts, check out SSS Did you Know series for previous posts.

See you Soon for more Sexy Science,


Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Virus, Bacteria - How do Antibiotics work?

6 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sniffy, still Sexy though, Readers,

By this time, you probably have all suffered from the sore throat that prevents you from sleeping or the cough that seems to empty your lungs, the sinuses under immense pressure that make your eyes watery, the sneezing, the shivering, the headaches, etc...
So naturally, you call your doctor/GP/clinic and request an urgent appointment because, quite honestly, you feel so shit, it can't be normal, you need medicines, and lots of them!!!
How many times, then, didn't I hear "my GP is crap, he only gave me paracetamol!", "I went to see another one, he gave me antibiotics, so see? The first one is obviously not qualified".
Yes, it's true, in the UK, your GP won't tell you to take some guafenisin, imodium or motilium or suck on Strepsils like doctors do 'on the continent' and you need to seek advice at the Pharmacy or on Google.
Although I don't particularly agree with the kind of self medication policy in this country, it does help to dis-engorge clinics for more serious cases.
So in case you wonder, here is a factsheet on bacteria and viruses and why there's no point taking Antibiotics when you have a cold.

Note: If you don't feel like reading, why not check my Pinterest infographic, just hover your pointer over here.

What's the difference between virus and bacteria?
When do we need antibiotics?

Bacteria
A bacterium is a single cell microbe. The content of this single cell is much simpler than the content of a human cell. For example, because their DNA is not contained in a defined vesicle, they are called prokaryotes. As opposed to our eukaryotic cells where the DNA is contained inside the nucleus.
They are categorised according to the fact that they have an outer membrane or not  (gram negative or positive respectively) and to their shape (spheres, rods, spirals, commas and corkscrews).

Their size can vary from 50 nm (0.05 micrometers = 0.00005 centimeters) to 2 micrometers in diameter or width for the spherical ones and from 1 to 10 micrometers for the long one.
(A micrometer is the size of a pin head, it is also 10 times smaller than a centimeter)

How do bacteria infect our body and what does the body do about it?
Bacteria love our bodies, our fluids are so rich in vitamins, sugars and other nutrients, they can find everything in there to grow and survive. We can be infected by bacteria by contact with them, through infected water, food, dust, air liquid droplets or through our wounds for example.
The points of entry are also our natural barriers such as our skin when we are sweating, our eyes and lacrymal glands, our nose and our nasal hair and the runny nose; and if through the mouth, the acidity of our stomach or the natural bacterial flora from our intestines will fight for us.
Unfortunately, some of them are stronger than our first defences and will continue their invasion and stimulate therefore our second line of defence, our immunity.

Immunity
Our immunity can be triggered by different mechanisms and our defensers can be macrophages (they eat the invaders and take a sample to show the rest of our defense lines what the body is fighting against), phagocytes (they are whole cells whose job is to eat the invaders), cytokines (messengers that will warn the rest of the immunity who's the culprit) or lymphocytes (cells that will fight the invaders or will control the cells that will fight the baddies). They will work altogether, sort of like -community officers - police officers - the army- would.
Following an infection, the signs are: The tissues in the area are red and warm, as a result of the large amount of blood reaching the site. They are also swollen, again due to the increased amount of blood and proteins that are present. The area is painful, due the expansion of tissues, causing mechanical pressure on nearby nerve cells, and also due to the presence of pain mediators.
The battle ends when all phagocytes have eaten and digested all the invaders. You can see their action when you are rejecting the pus or mucus - of different shades, depending on who's at fault!

Virus
Virus particles (known as virions) consist of two or three parts: i) the genetic material made from either DNA or RNA, which are long molecules that carry genetic information; ii) a protein coat that protects these genes; and in some cases iii) an envelope of lipids that surrounds the protein coat when they are outside a cell.
The shapes of viruses range from simple helical and icosahedral forms to more complex structures.
Example of virus structure

In general, viruses are much smaller than bacteria. Most viruses that have been studied have a diameter between 20 and 300 nanometres. Some filoviruses have a total length of up to 1400nm; their diameters are only about 80nm.

How does a virus infect our body and what does the body do about it?
Through coughs, sneezes, vomit particles, bites from infected animals or insects, exposure to infected bodily fluids, a virus can enter our body.
Viruses can't multiply on their own, they have to invade a 'host' cell and take over its machinery in order to be able to make more virus particles: they consist of genetic materials (DNA or RNA) surrounded by a protective coat of protein. They are capable of latching onto cells and getting inside them, and making the host cell use their DNA to spread themselves (here below, a specific example with the HIV retrovirus).
The cells of the mucous membranes, such as those lining the respiratory passages that we breathe through, are particularly open to virus attacks because they are not covered by protective skin.
The human body does have some natural defenses against a virus. A cell can initiate RNA interference when it detects viral infection, which works by decreasing the influence of the virus's genetic material in relation to the cell's usual material. The immune system also kicks into gear when it identifies a virus by producing antibodies that bind to the virus and render it unable to replicate. The immune system also releases T-cells, which work to kill the virus.

How do Antibiotics work?
Antibiotics are given as anti-bacteria medicine. They either kill the bacteria or stop the multiplication of bacteria. They are also working against parasites and fungi.
Choosing an antibiotic will kill the desired bacteria, but not the cells in your body. Each different type of antibiotic affects different bacteria in different ways. For example, an antibiotic might inhibit a bacterium's ability to turn glucose into energy, or its ability to construct its cell wall. When this happens, the bacterium dies instead of reproducing. At the same time, the antibiotic acts only on the bacterium's cell-wall-building mechanism, not on a normal cell's.
Antibiotics do not work on viruses because viruses are not alive. A bacterium is a living, reproducing lifeform. A virus is just a piece of DNA inserted into a living cell to reproduce more of the viral DNA. Therefore, there is nothing to "kill".

Bacterial resistance to Antibiotics
The most serious concern with antibiotic resistance is that some bacteria have become resistant to almost all of the easily available antibiotics. These bacteria are able to cause serious disease and this is a major public health problem. Important examples are methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) and multi-drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MDR-TB).

What to do to prevent Antibiotic resistance?
Solutions are to minimise unnecessary prescribing and overprescribing of antibiotics for example. Making sure to complete the entire course of the prescribed antibiotic is important so that it can be fully effective and not breed resistance. And of course, we must practise good hygiene and use appropriate infection control procedures.

See you Soon for more Sexy, less Sniffy, Science,






References
http://www.humanillnesses.com/original/At-Ca/Bacterial-Infections.html
http://health.howstuffworks.com/medicine/medication/question88.htm
http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Infections_bacterial_and_viral

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Science Cafés: Bringing the Sciences to a pub near you

6 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sexy Readers,

I have a couple of exciting news for you:
First of all, the next Cosy Science meet up will happen in a pub in Holborn (central London) and will address the subject of immunology. Immunology is the study of our immune system which is how our body is fighting against microbes for example in order to protect it from diseases.
During this special event, you will get to ask ANY question about it to the scientists who will be there!! I think that is a fantastic opportunity to finally understand what those school teachers were trying to make us understand or catch up on the latest discoveries in immunology. The QA session promises to be once again a lively one.
 
Cosy Science presents:"Everything you wanted to know about our immune system but were afraid to ask"
When: Tuesday 25th March 2014
What time: 7-10pm
Where: Cittie of York pub, 22 Holborn  
What it is about: The immune system is the ultimate master of self-defence. Its actions protect us from pathogens and cancers while allowing us to peacefully co-exist with the trillions of harmless microbes that inhabit our body. How the cells and molecules of the immune system achieve this delicate balance is not fully understood but rapid progress in this area is leading to a picture that is fundamentally distinct from earlier views. This new understanding of immune function offers exciting prospects for the development of new vaccines and therapies for human disease.

Secondly, the next Pint of Science festival is almost there and will transport us all over UK, with some international destinations too!! The idea behind this Science festival is to bring the Sciences to everyone in multiple pubs, cities and countries at the same time! Last year, I introduced their audacious first event on SSS, it turned out to be extremely successful. A bit like a music festival where you need to choose the stage depending on where your favourite artists will perform. Full programme is almost complete and I will update this post in due course with the latest news, so feel free to come and check it out again.
When: Monday 19th - Wednesday 21st May 2014
What time: Pub time
Where: Everywhere!
What it is about: Next Pint of Science festival will take place Monday 19th - Wednesday 21st May 2014. We will present four topics: Matters of the Mind (neurosciences and psychology), Understanding our Bodies (life sciences), Physics, Engineering and Chemistry, Planet Earth (earth sciences). We plan to expand to 7 different cities and 14 universities in the UK, and internationally to France, USA, Switzerland and the Republic of Ireland. 

No excuse for pretending not to know anything about Science, now is there? it's literally at your door step, welcome it!!

See you Soon for more Sexy Science,

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Did you Know? About Omega-9?

4 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sexy Readers,

We are resuming our Did you Know? Series today with an extra bit of information on Omegas!!! We already talked about them in our post about Olive Oil, better than Butter? And of course in our latest post on What are Omega-3 and -6?
We already addressed Omega-7 in the latest fast-read Sexy fact of our Did You Know? Series. This time, we are going to number 9!!! If you have a Pinterest board, you might wanna check out this article through its pin.

What is Omega-9?
Omega−9 fatty acids are common components of animal fats and vegetable oils. Two important omega−9 fatty acids in industry are Oleic acid (main component of olive oil, sunflower, macadamia oil and other monounsaturated fat) and Erucic acid (rapeseed, wallflower seed, and mustard seed). Like Omega-7, but unlike -3 and -6, Omega-9 is a non Essential Fatty Acid meaning that our body can produce it. Research has shown that Omega-9 MonoUnsaturated fatty acids can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke by increasing HDL (“good”) cholesterol and decreasing LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.

For more information on SSS Did you Know Series, check out our growing list of amazing fast-read facts.

See you Soon for more Sexy Science,
 
Oh OK, I'm too happy about my first Pinterest infographic so here it is:

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Did you Know? About Omega 7

6 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sexy Readers,

We are resuming our Did you Know? Series today with an extra bit of information on Omegas!!! We already talked about them in our post about Olive Oil, better than Butter? And of course in our latest post on What are Omega-3 and -6?

What is Omega-7?
Not many people know about Omega-7, we usually only hear about -3 and -6. Maybe because Omega-7 is a non essential monounsaturated Fatty acid meaning that our body can produce it. It is also known as Palmitoleic acid, a common constituent of animal fats and plant seed oils. It is different from Palmitic acid which is a saturated fat that comes from Palm oil, or dairy and meats.
We can consume some through a variety of animal oils, vegetable oils, and marine oils. Wild salmon, Macadamia oil and sea Buckthorn oil are the richest sources. Research shows it may help regulate fat and blood sugar metabolism, and ultimately weight loss. In vitro studies suggest that Omega-7 helps improve the function of the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas.There are also claims, although they need to be backed up by some serious studies, that Sea buckthorn oil, (which contains 30 to 40% Omega-7), has a role in improving eczema, acne, oral and stomach ulcers, and vaginal irritation/dryness. However, studies also show that Omega-7, much like a saturated fatty acid and not like a true monounsaturated one, raises low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and lower high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (ref) = raises bad cholesterol and lowers the good one. More on This HERE.

For more information on SSS Did you Know Series, check out our growing list of amazing fast-read facts. Come back soon for our next Did You Know instalment which will be on Omega-9!!! Yep, another one :)

See you Soon for more Sexy Science,




 

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

What are Omega-3 and -6?

4 comments from Sexy People
My Dear Sexy Readers,

This is something I have been on the lookout for quite a while now and certainly since I wrote the SSS article on Olive Oil - Better than Butter? I came across a few scientific papers with various claims on Omega-3 and/or -6 and their positive and/or negative effect on our health!
But the benefits or deleterious effects on our health are as contradictory as their varied nomenclature is confusing.
So here is my understanding - so far!

What are Omega-3 and -6?

Omega-3 and -6 are called essential fatty acids - Essentials because our body is not capable of making them even though they are necessary to the good development of our organs, notably our brain (hence the claim that eating Omega-3 rich food is important for school pupils - More on this here below).
For example, DHA (a type of Omega-3) is a major component of our brain and eye tissue and is vital during pregnancy and early infancy. It’s recognised by health authorities, professionals and nutritionists as a vital nutrient for promoting cardiovascular, brain, joint, nerve, vision, skin and immune health. 

Omega-3
Omega-3 can be found written as n-3 PUFA, ALA, EPA, DHA, ω-3. So what's the difference between all these?
PUFA is a general term and stands for PolyUnsaturated Fatty Acid - more on this HERE
ALA stands for Alpha Linolenic Acid - more on this HERE - and can be converted into EPA and DHA. It is not found in fish but in nuts and notable in flaxseed which is the richest source of ALA.
EPA (Eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) are found almost exclusively in fish and seafood, although these forms of Omega-3 are formed by their diet of single-celled marine organisms.  The oilier the fish, the more EPA and DHA are present. Exemples include salmon, mackerel and tuna.
Adult humans can convert ALA to DHA but only in small amounts, this is because it’s mainly used for energy whereas EPA and DHA aren’t.   

Omega-6
Omega-6 can be written n-6 PUFA, ω-6. It mostly comes as Linolenic acid LA from plant oils such as corn oil, soybean oil, and sunflower oil, as well as from chicken, eggs, avocado, nuts and seeds. As you can imagine, we are consuming vast amount of Omega-6 daily. It can be converted into Arachidonic Acid AA. Another Omega-6 is Gamma-Linolenic acid GLA which was first isolated from the seed oil of evening primrose, but can be also found in safflower, blackcurrant, borage and hemp seed oils.

What happens to them once we have eaten them
If we look at the conversion mechanisms:
From HERE

Linoleic acid (LA) and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) have 18 carbons. LA has 2 double bonds and the first one is at carbon 6, therefore it is a member of Omega-6 (C18:2n-6). ALA's first double bond out of the 3 is at carbon 3 so is part of the Omega-3 family (C18:3n-3). Both of these fatty acids (LA and ALA) are converted in the body to have more double bonds and increased number of carbons. LA is converted to arachidonic acid (AA) with 20 carbons and 4 double bonds (20:4) and ALA is converted to eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) which has 20 carbons and 5 double bonds (20:5). EPA can be further converted to docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) consisting of 22 carbons and 6 double bonds (22:6).

Why are they important?
Those converted products are precursors of Eicosanoids which are signaling molecules. For example, EPA is a precursor for prostaglandins-3 (inhibits platelet aggregation), thromboxane-3 and leukotrienes-5 group which are messengers involved in our immunity and inflammation response.
Both Omega-3 and -6 have pro-inflammatory effects, although Omega-3 less so than -6 or null depending on the tissue involved, which led to the popular understanding that -3 was anti-inflammatory is -6 was pro-inflammatory.
From HERE
Both Omega-3 and Omega-6 compete for the same enzymes (Desaturase and Elongase represented here above in the middle) that will lead to these pro-inflammatory Eicosanoids. 
Wikipedia tells us that the amounts and balance of these fats in a person's diet will affect the body's eicosanoid-controlled functions, with effects on cardiovascular disease, triglycerides, blood pressure, and arthritis.
(NOTE: Anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen, to name but a couple, act by downregulating eicosanoid synthesis.)
This competition for the enzymes sparked the wide belief that a balanced diet of Omega-3 and -6 was therefore essential for our body. Indeed, since our Westernized diet at an Omega-3 and -6 ratio of 1:20, due to the extensive use of Omega-6-rich vegetable oils, is far from the ideal 1:1 or the more realistic 1:4, it has been 'web-widely' speculated that it is the reason of our suffering from many diseases such as Cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, IBS & inflammatory bowel disease, macular degeneration, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, cancer, psychiatric disorders.

Do I need to take supplements?
As for anything, the choice is yours!
Following the belief that taking Omega-3 supplements was boosting pupils brain's functions, a couple of studies have tested groups of pupils either by giving them supplements or a placebo, or by measuring their DHA levels vs diet vs their school results. Needless to say, none of these studies have shown unequivocally that taking supplements was the cause for an increase in cognitive behaviour. Indeed, even the pupils taking the placebos, for the simple fact that they were watched over, were improving. Regarding the lab analysis of their DHA levels, let's remember that association is not causation!
After a quick search, I found another trial, but this time, properly managed with controls and all. The results show no improvement!
But unfortunately it's not only on pupils brain's activities that Omega-3 have shown to have no effect, but also on adults's cardiovascular function and accident's incidence!
A large, randomized, controlled trial failed to demonstrate a benefit to n-3 fatty acid supplementation in patients with cardiovascular risk factors. Admittedly, one weakness of the study was that it failed to account for variability in patients' diets. However, in 1999, the GISSI Prevention Trial found that n-3 fatty acids significantly reduced cardiac deaths in people who had already experienced myocardial infarction. And in 2008, the GISSI-HF trial found significantly reduced mortality and hospital admissions in heart failure patients given fish oil capsules in conjunction with standard therapy.
Personally, I think that cardiovascular incidents is a big umbrella underwhich many varied diseases are assembled. The little differences between each could bring out those differences in Omega-3 supplementation effects. It is my understanding that, in 2014, we still don't know for sure! 
But, I didn't see anywhere that it was bad for your health! So... The choice is yours.
(However if you do suffer from cardiovascular disease, do not take my word for it, I'm not a GP Dr. It's best to listen to your GP or specialist!)

But, Omega-3 or -6 are bad for our health?
Although studies suggest that intake of ALA supplements may moderately decrease the incidence of cardiovascular incidents, the results are either slightly statistically significant or just confusing.
There are also a number of studies suggesting that high levels of ALA in the blood and fat cells may correlate with an higher risk of prostate cancer. Although a dietary supplement of 2g did increase a blood biomarker for Prostate cancer, the results were not significant. Why mention it then?
Other studies dispute the relevance of stating such an effect when observational studies show no concrete difference. On the other hand, some studies show a protective effect or a genetic predisposition to prostate cancer enhanced by ALA. Again, these data are all very confusing and have to be taken extremely lightly.
These 2 nice articles on debugging the "fake" 'link' between Omega-3 supplements and Prostate cancer along with the comments will give you some nice insight into how to interpret results:
The Huffington post
Dr Geo's post

What's SSS take-home message?
Eat Fish!
As for Omega-3 pills, look out for DHA and EPA levels. I came across this website, and I think if you'd like a supplement, this one looks the best thought of.
I'm tempted to say, stay away from Omega-6 supplements. That is for that reason that I stopped giving my baby SMA toddler's milk that contain Omega-3 and Omega-6 supplements!

See you Soon for more Sexy Science,







References
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3865857/
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19921446
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12442909
http://www.medpagetoday.com/Cardiology/Prevention/38969
http://www.badscience.net/2010/06/the-return-of-a-2bn-fishy-friend/#more-1675
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0066697
http://paleozonenutrition.com/2011/05/10/omega-6-and-3-in-nuts-oils-meat-and-fish-tools-to-get-it-right/
http://www.barebiology.com/pages/what-is-omega3
http://www.webmd.com/diet/healthy-kitchen-11/omega-fatty-acids
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3859488/
http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/96/6/1262.long
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15051847
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18951003

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