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DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid)

DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) is an omega-3 fatty acid found in seaweed and fish like mackerel, tuna, cod liver, and salmon. Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary to keep a healthy heart and brain. Interestingly, without DHA infants would not develop their brains, eyes, or nervous systems properly.

Docosahexaenoic acid


Starting at birth our bodies start producing a small amount of this fatty acid, but we depend on our mother's milk to provide us with standard amounts. Infant formulas also contain some DHA, with the exact amount of this fatty acid depending on the quality of the brand.

However, as we grow into toddlers, teenagers, and adults in our fast paced western society we tend to get the bulk of our food via processed junk diet. As a result, we don't get even close to the amount of DHA we need, so it is no secret that we fail to get enough of omega 3 in our diet. Meanwhile, for athletes the consequences of DHA deficiency will impede them from reaching their goals and staying healthy. This is why adding DHA supplements to your arsenal is so important.

Research and medical uses

The biggest benefit of DHA is its positive impact on the heart, as it has been found to reduce triglycerides, reduce blood clots, reduce arterial plaque, and lower blood pressure. In fact, the American Heart Association (AHA) recommends eating fatty fish twice per week at minimum, and those who already have heart problems should add a DHA supplement to their diet too.

Furthermore, DHA is also very beneficial when it comes to arthritis and joint pain, since it has been shown to reduce symptoms and inflammation linked to arthritis. Besides, it has also been shown to reduce fatigue and joint pain linked to lupus - an autoimmune disease.

Finally, depression has been shown to be lessened in those who improve their intake of DHA.

Other health benefits

It has been proven that women who suffer on their menstrual cycle from cramps have improvements when using DHA consistently. Therefore, if you are a female and you want to experience these effects, you should be supplementing with DHA all the time, not just while on menstrual cycle.

Use for bodybuilders

When bodybuilders use anabolic steroids, they tend to have lipid and heart strain. This is especially true with androgenic and more harsh steroids, like moderate doses of testosterone, anadrol, and trenbolone. Moreover, it will also occur from estrogenic compounds that will cause heart strain due an increase in water retention. Hence, it is important that anyone who uses anabolic steroids protect their heart, especially on cycle. Luckily, this can be achieved with DHA, as it will improve heart health by helping normalize blood pressure and prevent plaque buildup in arteries.

Another big way athletes can benefit from DHA supplementation is related to joint health. Whether you are a swimmer, cyclist, runner, tennis player, or a weight lifter, a time will come where your joints will bother you. By taking DHA regularly, you will help reduce arthritis and lubricate those stubborn joints (especially knees and elbows). This will also prevent nagging and chronic injuries in other joints that you would never expect to be a problem, such as the shoulders, hips, and ankles.

Side effects

You should never overdose on DHA because of the risk of blood thinning. However, this type of situation is rare when it is taken in reasonable dosages.

Supplement forms

The two common forms that contain DHA are fish oil capsules, and DHA from algae (for those vegan).

Where to find

N2guard contains 15 milligrams (mg) of DHA per serving, plus dozens of additional ingredients that make it the most potent support supplement on the market. I used it daily to get my DHA and other minerals.


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Lev Butlerov holds a Masters Degree in Biology, he is NASM Certified, ISSA Certified, The National Council on Strength & Fitness (NCSF) certified and is currently working on his American Council on Exercise (ACE) certificate. From Lev: I love bodybuilding and the biology, chemistry of the industry. It's my hobby and my love. I have done multiple bodybuilding shows, 2 in Germany in the past 5 years. I hope everyone enjoys my articles. In 2021 (going into 2022, 2023) I will be working on my PhD thesis in physiotherapy and biochemistry, I hope to have some of the bits published here.

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