What is vitamin F? What are the Benefits of Vitamin F?

What is Vitamin F

Health Desk, Delhi Magazine: Vitamin F is a set of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are very beneficial for the skin or the nervous system.

Little is said about vitamin F, which has become fashionable in recent times for its cosmetic properties. Known as “the skin’s coat” for the protective effect of its fatty acids on the dermis, vitamin F is not really a vitamin, although it is popularly known as such.

The nutritionist explains it: “Although it sounds confusing, when we talk about vitamin F we are referring to a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are mainly divided into omega-3 and omega-6 . It is important to know that the body cannot synthesize it, so it is very important to include foods that contain these fatty acids”.

“These unsaturated fatty acids or vitamin F act as part of cell membranes, so they are very important for the cellular structure of the skin. This vitamin restores this skin layer and has a protective effect on the skin against external aggressions such as the sun, dryness or humidity. With a correct contribution, we avoid flaking and cell inflammation that ends up having an early aging effect on the skin. In addition to these functions at the cellular level, unsaturated fatty acids also have beneficial effects on the nervous and cardiovascular systems.”

Benefits of Vitamin F

Despite the fact that its functions are decisive for the body, in addition to the fact that it has proven properties on the skin, there are many people who have never heard of vitamin F. This is due, according to Torrent, to a matter of nomenclature. “Omega-3 and omega-6 are the order of the day, but on the other hand they are not known by the name of vitamin F. In fact, if we do an internet search on vitamins, very few portals do mention of vitamin F”, explains the nutritionist.

Vitamin F helps improve the so-called bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase the good cholesterol (HDL), “which affects the cardiovascular system, preventing the onset of heart problems,” explains Morillo. In addition, it improves the health of the nervous system, which can be beneficial to prevent or reduce symptoms related to aging of the body, as well as the possibility of suffering from certain diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis. It also has anti-inflammatory functions and its cosmetic properties stand out above all. “Vitamin F appears more and more in skin care products, since as a fatty acid it helps to restore the natural barrier and manages to improve hydration. It also has a very important role in preventing skin sensitivity”, explains the bluaU de Sanitas nutritionist.

Some of the symptoms that may indicate a deficiency of this vitamin are hair loss, dry tear ducts and even “noticing a general drop in performance and having immune problems such as colds, flu or allergic reactions”, continues Morillo. For his part, Torrent explains that some values ​​that may be affected in laboratory tests due to vitamin D deficiency are LDL cholesterol (which could increase), although the most effective is to perform a fatty acid analysis in red blood cells or erythrocytes in a blood test. “Through this study, it is possible to know the consumption of these fatty acids in the last three months, so that it allows us to know with certainty if there really is a deficit,

In the same way that a deficiency of vitamin F can have consequences on the body, an excess could also be harmful. Excessive consumption of fatty acids can lead to stomach aches and heartburn.

Since the body cannot synthesize it, the only way to get this vitamin is through the consumption of a series of foods. It is important to bear in mind that it is not enough to take omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, present in a good variety of foods, but it is also essential that the consumption of these is balanced. An imbalance between them can lead to inflammation and health problems, from trauma and infection to chronic degenerative diseases.

According to a research “most studies indicate that the ratio between omega-3 and omega-6 should be lower than what we currently find in the general population. In this line, it is necessary to promote nutritional education programs stressing the need to increase the consumption of foods rich in omega-3, or even incorporate functional foods or dietary supplements when required, although always in the form of certified and validated products with guarantees of purity and quality, to be consumed in the context of a balanced diet”.

This means that, in general, the western population consumes more omega-6 than required. Niklas Gustafson, co-founder of Natruly, a company specializing in the development of natural and healthy products explains it: “The ratio should be approximately one part of omega-3 for every part of omega-6, although in Western diets there is usually a predominance of omega-6 well above what is recommended.If there is a prevalence of omega-6 acids, present in some vegetable oils and therefore in a large part of processed products, inflammatory processes can occur in the body”.

Food for Vitamin F

It is useless, therefore, to consume foods rich in omega-6 if they are not combined with the consumption of omega-3. The good news is that the latter is present in numerous common foods in our diet, so it is very easy to obtain through food. Here are some of them:

Blue Fish
Sardines, salmon, tuna, mackerel and other oily fish are the jewel in the crown when it comes to omega-3 fatty acids. For the less cooky, it is not necessary to go punctually to the fishmonger and start making impossible stews: it is enough to have a can of sardines for breakfast, or include a can of tuna for dinner (always natural or in olive oil, since if includes other vegetable oils we will also be consuming omega-6).

According to a study published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health , a diet based on oily fish can help to have good mental health thanks to its high content of these fatty acids. Another study, this time led by researchers from the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM) published in the journal Nutrientsand Clinical Nutrition , points out that the consumption of oily fish is associated with a better evolution of pain among those over 60 years of age.

Flax and olive oils
Extra virgin olive oil and flax oil are high in omega-3. For its part, sunflower oil, pumpkin seed oil or margarine are rich in omega-6. This does not mean that they should not be consumed, since the body requires a part of this fatty acid for its proper functioning, but that it must always be done in accordance with omega-3 fatty acids. In fact, foods such as olive oil and flax oil, which are very rich in this nutrient, also contain omega-6 fatty acids.

Nuts and seeds
“Nuts and seeds are rich in vitamin F, therefore it is important to consume almonds, chia seeds, flax seeds, walnuts, macadamia nuts or sunflower seeds, among others,” explains Torrent. The Spanish Heart Foundation recommends consuming 3 to 7 servings a week, taking into account that a serving consists of between 20 and 30 grams. A study by the Universitat Rovira i Virgili, belonging to the Network Biomedical Research Center for Physiopathology of Obesity and Nutrition (CIBEROBN), and Harvard University concludes that diets supplemented with walnuts decrease total cholesterol. All this, after analyzing the results of 26 nutritional intervention studies with 1059 participants.

Avocado is another of the foods rich in essential fatty acids, which, although it has a high caloric intake, is also very interesting from a nutritional point of view. Miguel López Moreno, nutritionist and researcher at the Food Sciences Research Institute (CIAL), a research center shared between the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) and the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), points out that many people tend to to eliminate it from the diet when they intend to lose weight, given its high caloric intake. “It is a mistake, because although it has many calories it also provides heart-healthy fats and is very satiating thanks to its high soluble fiber content, much more satiating than the insoluble fiber present in cereals.”

Both spinach and other green leafy vegetables are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, as well as vitamin K, iron and calcium. Broccoli and kale are also good sources of vitamin F which should be introduced as part of a varied and balanced diet, rich in fruits, vegetables and vegetables, which includes good sleep hygiene and regular physical exercise.

You would also love to read our last post on Delhi Magazine: Keto Diet.

Delhi Magazine Team

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