As the brain is made up of around 10% fat, a diet that is low in omega-3s may affect the fatty acid composition of cells in the brain which may alter their function. EPA and DHA have anti-inflammatory activity by reducing the synthesis of prostaglandins and inflammatory cytokines.
DHA is a vital component of the membranes in cells, especially those in the brain and retina (the nerve layer that lines the back of the eye which senses light and transmits impulses through the optic nerve to the brain – corresponds to the film in a camera). As such, DHA is necessary for normal brain development and for the maintenance of normal brain function throughout life. DHA is preferred by the brain to any other fatty acid.