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引用自美國懷孕協會 American Pregnancy Association
本文僅就美國懷孕協會網站中文章做翻譯,不加任何註解。

Scientific research is constantly expanding our knowledge of nutritional needs in pregnancy. Among the most recent developments in this field, is the importance of omega-3 fatty acids in both the development of a healthy baby and in the health of the mother.

科學研究讓我們不斷地了解懷孕期間要如何補充營養。根據最新研究發現,Omega-3不飽和脂肪酸的攝取,對一個健康的寶寶和健康的媽媽是一樣的重要。


What are Omega -3 Fatty Acids?

Omega-3s are a family of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids that are essential nutrients for health and development. Unfortunately, these are not synthesized by the human body and therefore must be obtained from diet or supplementation. However, the typical American diet is greatly lacking in Omega—3's.

Research indicates that the two most beneficial omega-3s are EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Although EPA and DHA naturally occur together and work together in the body, studies show that each fatty acid has unique benefits. EPA supports the heart, immune system, and inflammatory response. DHA supports the brain, eyes, and central nervous system which is why it is uniquely important for pregnant and lactating women.

什麼是Omega-3不飽和脂肪酸?

Omega-3是長鍊型不飽和脂肪酸家族的一員,而不飽和脂肪酸是對健康發展非常有幫助的一種營養。不幸的是,人體無法自行合成,必須依賴外在的飲食或補充。然而,大部分美國人的飲食當中都缺乏了Omega-3。

研究發現兩種最有益的Omega-3分別是 EPA 和 DHA。雖然EPA和DHA在自然界是同時產生而且在體內也是同時工作,研究顯示這兩種脂肪酸都有它獨特的益處。EPA幫助心臟、免疫系統,和發炎反應。DHA支持腦部、眼睛、和中樞神經系統的發展,而這些剛好都是對於懷孕和哺乳期婦女特別重要的。


Why is Omega-3 important?

Adequate intake of Omega 3 fats is essential to maintaining the balanced production of hormone-like substances called prostaglandins. Prostaglandins help regulate many important physiological functions including blood pressure, blood clotting, nerve transmission, the inflammatory and allergic responses, the functions of the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract and the production of other hormones. Depending on the type of fatty acids in the diet, certain types of prostaglandins may be produced in large quantities, while others may not be produced at all. This prostaglandin imbalance can lead to disease.

The role of omega-3s in producing beneficial prostaglandins may explain why they have been shown to have so many health benefits, including the prevention of heart disease, improving cognitive function and the regulation of inflammation. High doses of omega-3s have been used to treat and prevent mood disorders and new studies are identifying their potential benefits for a wide range of conditions including cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and other autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.

為什麼Omega-3是重要的呢?

補充足夠的Omega-3是非常重要的,因為它會幫助荷爾蒙的平衡,比方說前列腺素。前列腺素幫助控管許多生理上的機能,包括血壓、凝血、神經傳導、發炎和過敏反應、腎功能、消化道功能和其他荷爾蒙的生成。根據日常飲食中攝取的脂肪,某些種類的前列腺素會被大量地生成,而某些種類的則完全沒有分泌。這種前列腺素的不平衡會導致疾病。

而Omega-3能幫助生成有益的前列腺素,這也許可以解釋為什麼它對於健康那麼有幫助,包括預防心血管疾病、增進認知功能和調節發炎。高濃度的Omega-3已經被用來治療和預防情緒失調。而最新的研究也認定它們潛在的益處可被廣泛地應用在像是癌症、腸炎、和其他自我免疫系統的疾病,比方說紅斑性狼瘡和風濕性關節炎。


Why is taking Omega-3 especially important during pregnancy?

Omega-3s have been found to be essential for both neurological and early visual development of the baby. However, the standard western diet is severely deficient in these critical nutrients. This omega-3 dietary deficiency is compounded by the fact that pregnant women become depleted in omega-3s, since the fetus uses omega-3s for its nervous system development. Omega-3s are also used after birth to make breast milk. With each subsequent pregnancy, mothers are further depleted. Research has confirmed that adding EPA and DHA to the diet of pregnant women has a positive effect on visual and cognitive development of the child. Studies have also shown that higher consumption of omega-3s may reduce the risk of allergies in infants.

Omega-3 fatty acids have positive effects on the pregnancy itself. Increased intake of EPA and DHA has been shown to prevent pre-term labor and delivery, lower the risk of pre-eclampsia and may increase birth weight and gestational weight. Omega-3 deficiency also increases the mother's risk for depression. This may explain why postpartum mood disorders may become worse and begin earlier with subsequent pregnancies.

In a 2006 national survey, over two-thirds of pregnant women and new mothers said that they had not received any information from their health care providers about the benefits that Omega-3 could provide during their pregnancy and in the postpartum time.

為什麼Omega-3在懷孕期間特別重要?

Omega-3已經被發現它對於寶寶神經和早期視力的發展非常重要。然而,標準的西方飲食對此重要的營養素嚴重地缺乏。Omega-3的缺乏主要是懷孕婦女消耗許多的Omega-3,因為胚胎會使用Omega-3來發展它的神經系統。Omega-3也會被用來在產後生成母乳。連續懷孕的話,媽媽更容易耗損。研究已經證實懷孕婦女增加EPA和DHA的攝取,對小孩的視覺和認知發展有正面的效果。報告也指出攝取多量的Omega-3也能減少嬰兒發生過敏的危險。

Omega-3脂肪酸對懷孕本身就有正面的幫助。增加EPA和DHA的攝取,可防止早產,減低妊娠毒血症的危險,也有可能增加胎兒重量和孕期體重。缺乏Omega-3也會增加媽媽罹患憂鬱症的危險。這也許能夠解釋連續懷孕時,為何產後憂鬱症會越來越嚴重而且開始的時間越來越早。

在2006年一份全國的調查,超過三分之二的懷孕婦女和新手媽媽說她們從來沒有從醫院中獲得有關Omega-3可帶來好處的資訊,不論是在懷孕期間或是產後。


What foods contain Omega-3 (EPA + DHA)?

The best sources of EPA and DHA are cold water fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines, anchovies, and herring. Many people are justifiably concerned about mercury and other toxins in fish, especially during pregnancy. For this reason, purified fish oil supplements are often the safest source of EPA.and DHA. A high quality fish oil supplement from a reputable manufacturer delivers the health benefits of EPA and DHA without the risk of toxicity.

Many people think that flaxseed and/or flaxseed oil contains omega-3s. But flaxseed contains the shorter-chain omega-3, ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), which is different from the longer-chain EPA and DHA. EPA and DHA are the omega-3s that the body needs for optimal health and development. While it was once thought that the human body could convert ALA to EPA and DHA, current research shows that such conversion rarely and inefficiently occurs. Fish oil is a more reliable source of EPA and DHA.

何種食物含有Omega-3 (EPA+DHA)?

EPA和DHA最佳來源是冷水魚,像是鮭魚、鮪魚、沙丁魚、鯷魚、和鯡魚。很多民眾會擔心魚中的汞金屬和其他毒素,特別是在懷孕期間。如果是這個理由的話,經過純化後的魚油補充品反而是EPA和DHA最安全的來源。使用優良製造商所生產的魚油產品,可享受到EPA和DHA對健康的好處,而且不用擔心有毒物。

很多人認為亞麻籽或是亞麻籽油也含有Omega-3。但是,亞麻籽裡的Omega-3是屬於短鍊的ALA,這跟長鍊的EPA和DHA是不同的。人體需要EPA和DHA這兩種Omega-3來促進健康與發展。雖然之前有人說ALA在人體內也會被轉換成EPA和DHA,但最新的研究卻顯示這種轉換很少發生,而且沒什麼效率。因此,魚油還是EPA和DHA比較可靠的來源。


Is it safe to take Fish Oil during pregnancy?

Quality fish oil is safe to take during pregnancy. Fresh fish (that is eaten) can often contain environmental toxins like mercury that accumulate during its life span. These toxins can be virtually eliminated during the manufacture and processing of fish oil, with the use of high quality raw materials and an advanced refining process.

Some brands of fish oil are of higher quality than others. A reputable fish oil manufacturer should be able to provide documentation of third-party lab results that show the purity levels of their fish oil, down to the particles per trillion level.

懷孕期間補充魚油安全嗎?

高品質的魚油,在懷孕期間食用是安全的。新鮮的魚肉通常會被環境污染,像是汞金屬會日積月累地堆積在魚肉中。這類毒素在魚油生產的過程中,使用高品質的原料和先進的提鍊程序,事實上都被去除的差不多了。

有些品牌的魚油在品質上優於其他的牌子。一個好的魚油製造商必須要能夠提供第三實驗室的檢驗報告,用來證明魚油的精純度,甚至可做到兆分之一的精細度。


What should I look for when purchasing Fish oil?
  • Investigate the manufacturing process---How is the fish oil manufactured and what are the quality standards that the manufacturer is using? The quality standards that exist for fish oil-including the Norwegian Medicinal Standard, the European Pharmacopoeia Standard and the voluntary U.S. standard established by the Council for Responsible Nutrition's 2006 monograph-guarantee quality by setting maximum allowances for toxins.
  • Smell---Does the fish oil smell fishy? Research shows that fish oils only smell unpleasant when the oil has started to degrade and is becoming rancid. A high quality fish oil supplement will not smell fishy.
  • Taste---Does the fish oil taste fishy? The freshest and highest-quality fish oils should not taste fishy. Avoid fish oils that have really strong or artificial flavors added to them because they are most likely trying to hide the fishy flavor of rancid oil.
購買魚油時應該要注意什麼?

研究生產過程--- 魚油如何被製造?製造商使用何種品管控制?目前現行的魚油標準包括挪威醫療標準、歐規藥學標準、和自律性的美國標準,由責任營養會議於2006年專題報告中所建立。這些標準都是用來確保品質,設定最大可允許之毒物含量。

味道--- 魚油有魚腥味嗎?研究顯示,魚油只會在開始變質和腐壞時變得不好聞。一個高品質的魚油產品是不會有魚臭味。

口感--- 魚油吃起來很腥嗎?最新鮮和最高品質的魚油不應該嚐起來有腥味。避免味道很重的魚油,或是有添加人工香料的魚油,因為這些香料主要就是用來遮蓋腐敗魚油的腥味。

How much Fish Oil should be taken?

ISSFAL (the International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids) has established the following recommendedminimum dosagechart:

Infants (1-18 months):

0-15 lbs: 32 mg/lb EPA+DHA

Children (1.5-15 yrs):

15 mg/lb EPA+DHA

Adults (15-115 yrs):

500 mg EPA+DHA

(with a minimum of 220 mg EPA and 220 mg DHA)

Pregnant and Lactating Women:

300 mg DHA daily

魚油的攝取量為多少呢?

ISSFAL (國際脂肪酸和脂質研究協會) 建立來下列 最低 建議攝取量

嬰兒 (1-18個月)

0-15磅: 32 毫克/每磅 EPA+DHA

小孩 (1.5- 15歲)

15毫克/每磅 EPA+DHA

成人 (15-115歲)

500mg EPA+DHA

(EPA最少要220毫克、DHA最少要220毫克)

懷孕及哺乳期婦女

每日300毫克DHA

Last Updated: 08/2009