As we get older many functions of our body start to decline leading to suboptimal organ functions.
Also the production of the enzymes that convert the short chain plant omega-3 fatty acids into the longer omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) declines. That means as we get older we become even more dependent on the external supply of long chain omega-3 fatty acids in our daily diet.

Omega3 Index and Aging

Research suggests that a high omega-3 index may slow down the biological aging prosess in cells.
One consequence of aging is that our genetic material (DNA) gets more damaged, especially at the ends of the DNA chain that are called telomeres.

These telomere tips get shorter after every cell division and the connection to biological aging was awarded with the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2009.
In human blood cells, telomere length can be as high as 8.000 base pairs (DNA building blocks) at birth and go down to 3.000 base pairs as people get older.

In elderly people they can be as low as 1.500 base pairs. Infammation, smoking, obesity or lack of exercise are all reasons for damage and shortening of telomeres. When the telomeres are too short, they become inactive and the cell can no longer divide.

Thus, the shortening of those telomeres has been indentified as an emerging biomarker for biological aging, also known as cellular aging. The omega-3 fatty acid connection to longevity and healthy aging is based on the fact that they seem to influence telomere length.

High Omega-3 index slows biological aging in omega-3 index aging study

In a recent aging study conducted with patients with coronary heart disease, individuals with a high omega-3 index were shown to have a slowed down biological aging process, as measured by telomere length. Moreover, persons with the lowest omega-3 index faced the quickest telomere shortening.

Over a period of 5 years, individuals with the highest omega-3 index (almost 9%) had a 65 % reduction in telomere shortening compared to individuals with the lowest omega-3 index of around 3%.

This observation might explain that Japanese people live longer on average than any other population, because of their high intake of omega-3 fatty.

The results suggest that with an increase of the omega-3 index to the target zone of above 8%, a potentially slowing down of the aging process could be achieved.

Ω Krill oil can help in effectively increasing the omega-3 index and might help in slowing down the aging process by protecting telomere length.