What are essential fatty acids?

What are essential fatty acids?

Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are "essential" because our bodies cannot produce them: we need to ingest them or apply them topically. EFAs are anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory. They stimulate collagen and elastin production, and even repair damage done by free radicals. 

Hands down the best way to get all the benefits of EFAs is to ingest them. However, supplementing with topical application has been proven to help keep the skin hydrated and maintain skin elasticity.

"Differing ratios of essential fatty acids are major determinants of the barrier repair benefits of natural oils. Oils with a higher linoleic acid to oleic acid ratio have better barrier repair potential, whereas oils with higher amounts of irritating oleic acid may be detrimental to skin-barrier function [i.e. olive oil]."

Essential Fatty Acids found in Fatskn

  • Palmitic Acid (Omega 6) - The most common fatty acid found in the human body; crucial to the structural integrity and barrier function of the skin (palmitic acid also accounts for 20-30% in breastmilk - so you know it's good!)
  • Palmitoleic Acid (Omega 7) - Anti-microbialanti-microbial 
  • CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) - Anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial. Can improve certain types of dermatitis (eczema)
  • Oleic Acid (Omega 9) - Carrier oil, helps other oils to penetrate skin (when properly balanced with linoleic acid)
  • Linoleic Acid (Omega 6) - Moisturizing, anti-inflammatory, encourages healing, it’s involved in the natural exfoliating process, and it even treats hyperpigmentation

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REFERENCES:

"Essential fatty acids: molecular and cellular basis of their anti-cancer action and clinical implications"   https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Wen_Jiang4/publication/13436049_Regulation_of_cell_adhesion_a_central_mechanism_in_the_anticancer_action_of_essential_fatty_acids_review/links/55d4277e08ae0b8f3ef937b2/Regulation-of-cell-adhesion-a-central-mechanism-in-the-anticancer-action-of-essential-fatty-acids-review.pdf

"Fatty acids penetration into human skin [...]"        https://avs.scitation.org/doi/pdf/10.1116/1.4977941

"The usefulness of topical application of essential fatty acids (EFA) to prevent pressure ulcers" https://europepmc.org/abstract/med/9233238

"Natural Oils for Skin-Barrier Repair: Ancient Compounds Now Backed by Modern Science" https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28707186

"Essential fatty acids and skin health" https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/health-disease/skin-health/essential-fatty-acids

"Palmitic Acid: Physiological Role, Metabolism and Nutritional Implications"   https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5682332/

"Skin whitening effect of linoleic acid is enhanced by liposomal formulations" https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15056874


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