DHA in dyslexia

 
 
 

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), dyslexia is “a disorder manifested by a difficulty learning to read, despite conventional instruction, adequate intelligence and sociocultural opportunity. It is dependent upon fundamental cognitive disabilities which are frequently of constitutional origin”. It is estimated that between 5 % and 15 % of the world population is dyslexic (depending on the criteria used to define dyslexia). This means that millions of people have problems with reading, writing and spelling. When recognition of words is not rapid, comprehension and remembering of what has been read becomes a challenge and dealing with it can lead to frustration and low self-esteem (dyslexia is the major cause of reading failure in school).

Reading is a complex task, not only a question of translation of letters into sounds. Many people with dyslexia have difficulties with clearly seeing letters and their order. One possible explanation is that they have an abnormal functionning of the magnocellular via of the visual system (which controls visual guidance of attention and of eye fixation) that destabilises visual perception. This abnormality may be caused by genetic vulnerability or a reduced uptake of omega-3 fatty acids, because cells of this via require DHA to maintain their rapid responses. So, supplementation with DHA may improve their function and, thus, the reading of dyslexics.

 

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