When about 7 or 8, I discovered fried clams, and was so impressed with the delightful bland mollusk, that I even did a report on it as a 4th grader. While clams didn’t raise my Omega-3 levels significantly, I did become interested in seafood, which probably did ensure that my Omega-3 levels were higher than many kids today. However, it wasn’t until 2004 that I became a seafood freak, which is to say, if seafood is a choice on a menu today, I almost always order it. I began eating more fish in 2004 because I took the GRE that year, and I wanted a brain boost. My scores were much higher than when I took it in 2000. Whether fish oil was responsible is debatable (I also studied like crazy), but I believe I am healthier for it.
I take 2 grams of fish oil a day, which gives me 360 mg of EPA and 240 mg of DHA, both abbreviation for Omega-3 fatty acids in most seafood. I also tend to consume a decent amount of seafood products, which means I am further benefiting from the goodness of Omega-3 fats. Apparently, children in North America aren’t quite as fortunate. In a recent study, only 22 percent of children met the U.S. and Canadian minimum recommend intake of 90 mg of EPA or DHA per day. 90 mg is a pretty low amount to begin with, and most kids studied weren’t even getting this! Considering a deficiency of Omega-3 fats can lead to concentration problems (and a host of other issues), giving our kids more salmon, tuna, and even fish oil softgels might be a good idea. At all the schools I have been to (as a teacher or student), I recall rarely having non-fried fish, and only having fried fish occasionally. And we wonder why Johnny can’t read, Michael can’t concentrate, and Samantha can’t get through the day without pharmaceuticals.