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Low Levels Of Omega-3 In Children May Result In Poor Sleep, Learning Problems

March 6, 2014: 12:00 AM EST
New U.K. research adds to the growing evidence of the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids. Scientists found that high levels of omega-3 DHA fatty acids in algae and seafood are also linked to improved sleep. The study involved 362 healthy seven- to nine-year olds who were all struggling readers. About 40 percent of the kids were reported – via parental questionnaires – to have regular sleep disturbances. For the study, these children were monitored nightly with wrist sensors. Those who received daily omega-3 supplements slept nearly an hour longer than those taking a placebo, and had seven fewer waking episodes per night. “Alarmingly low levels” of omega-3s in the blood of children could be related to poor sleep and, in turn, behavior and learning and learning problems, the researchers concluded.
Paul Montgomery et al. , "Fatty acids and sleep in UK children: Subjective and pilot objective sleep results from the DOLAB study – a randomized controlled trial. ", Journal of Sleep Research, March 06, 2014, © Montgomery et al.
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