Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) are vitamin-like polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). They accumulate as highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFA) in tissues where they form potent hormone-like eicosanoids that act on selective receptors located in nearly every tissue of the body and affect health. Omega-3 and omega-6 EFA differ in their health impact, and many chronic health disorders are made worse by excessive actions of omega-6 eicosanoids.
Converting PUFA to HUFA
Metabolism of dietary EFA converts the 18-carbon PUFA into 20- and 22- carbon HUFA that accumulate in tissue membranes.
Balance in foods
The EFA in the foods we eat will control the balance of tissue HUFA that affect many health conditions.
Metabolism of tissue HUFA forms potent hormone-like mediators that act on specific tissue receptors and affect many body functions.
Updated June, 2017