Omega-3’s (n-3) and -6’s (n-6) play crucial roles in the human body, particularly in the hippocampus and the frontal cortex. The hippocampus, located deep in the brain, is responsible for making new memories and plays a major role in emotions. The frontal cortex, located at the front of the brain, is involved in making executive decisions like planning and decision making. A recently published article in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers recruited a total of 78 children, ages 7-12.
They determined that dietary and plasma n-3 intake, as well as n-6 to n-3 ratio, can predict cognitive performance. In younger children (n = 41), aged 7-9, a balanced intake was associated with better cognitive performance. However, in older children (n = 37), aged 10-12, a higher dietary n-3 intake, and lower ratio was associated with better cognitive performance. A similar pattern was observed when authors investigated the relationship between blood plasma fatty acid levels and cognitive performance. The study highlights the importance of n-3’s and -6’s in proper cognitive functions including planning and memory.