Epax launches triple omega 3-9-11 oil for skin health

By Olivia Haslam

- Last updated on GMT

 © Image courtesy of Epax
© Image courtesy of Epax

Related tags omega 3 EPA and DHA Fish oil supplements Omega-3 fatty acid skin health

Epax has introduced a skin health supplement combining familiar omega-3s with ‘up-and-coming’ omegas-9 and 11 for a ‘full spectrum’ effect.

It is the first concentrated version of an oil with both long-chain monounsaturated fatty acids (LC-MUFAs) and long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) to offer complimentary effects for the skin, according to the Norwegian marine oil manufacturer, a subsidiary of fishery giant Pelagia AS. 

“EPAX Omega 3-9-11 offers the best of both worlds—the familiar, well-proven omega-3, and the up-and-coming omegas 9 and 11,” said Bjørn Refsum, CEO of Epax.

Omegas 3, 9 and 11

Omega-3 LC-PUFAs such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are well established for their benefits in multiple health areas.

“They have widespread effects in the body, supported by strong epidemiological data and explained through numerous well-described mechanisms,” said Sarah Christianslund, product marketing manager at Epax Norway AS. “In other words, research, quite rightly has concentrated its efforts on the fatty acids that deliver benefit time after time.”

Epax’s oil is derived from pelagic fish (species that live and feed away from the bottom of the sea) from the North Atlantic, which, as well as a healthy amount of omega-3, contain high levels of omega-9 and omega-11.

The limited research to date on omegas 9 and 11 means they are less well known, but Christianslund said that the existing research shows promise in health benefits that are complementary to those of EPA and DHA.

Combined potential ​ 

Research has shown​ that EPA and DHA can improve skin barrier function, inhibit UV-induced inflammation and hyperpigmentation, attenuate dry skin and pruritus elicited by dermatitis, accelerate skin wound healing and prevent skin cancer development.

Meanwhile, omega-9 has been shown to alleviate skin inflammation​, and a previous trial on omega-11, also known as cetoleic acid, found that supplementation with the ingredient led to significant reductions in redness (Mildenberger, et al.)

EPA and LC-MUFAs have distinct metabolic targets, probably due to differential biodistribution, Christianslund said, noting that "improvement of metabolic syndrome may possibly be due to a combined effect of n-3 PUFA and LC-MUFAs."

Studies​ with oils rich in cetoleic acid have shown improvements in LDL cholesterol, insulin and glucose levels, and these are areas that EPA and DHA have mild or no effect,” she added.

EPA and DHA instead reduce triglycerides​, improve HDL levels and reduce blood pressure, she explained, noting that the combination could give broader metabolic protection.  

Ultra-concentrated

The new product is produced using Epax’s patented distillation process, EQP+ Tech, which separates individual fatty acids from fish oil, and can increase the concentration of the fatty acids without the use of excessive heat or harsh chemicals.

This allows specific ratios of desired fatty acids to be achieved, Christianslund said, noting that the Omega 3-9-11 end-product is ultra-concentrated, containing a minimum of 720 mg/g of the fatty acids.

Next, Epax will be expanding its research into the role of LC-MUFAs for skin health with a randomized placebo-controlled study in subjects with eczema, the recruitment for which has just begun.

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