Linoleic acid is an essential omega-6 fatty acid that comes from plant sources. Essential means the body must have it to maintain health and life sustaining functions. Omega-6 fatty acids are polyunsaturated.
Among its many vital roles in the body, linoleic acid composition of intestinal membranes is important for epithelial cell function and disturbances may contribute to the pathophysiology of celiac disease.1
Q: What are epithelial cells?
A: Epithelial cells make up the surface mucosa of the digestive tract and also the respiratory tract, urinary tract and genital tract.
Linoleic acid is an important building material for the eicosanoids, a large group of highly bioactive hormone-like substances including prostaglandins, leukotrienes, and thromboxanes that are involved in blood clotting, inflammation, and vasoconstriction.2
What Is Linoleic Acid Deficiency in Celiac Disease?
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Steel DM, Ryd W, Ascher H, Strandvik B. Abnormal fatty acid pattern in intestinal mucosa of children with celiac disease is not reflected in serum phospholipids. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2006 Sep; 43(3):318-23. ↩
Richardson AJ. The importance of omega-3 fatty acids for behavior, cognition, and mood. Scandinavian Journal of Nutrition. 2003; 47(2):92-8 ↩