Do Omega-3 fatty acids prevent cardiovascular disease?

Do Omega-3 fatty acids prevent cardiovascular disease?

Omega-3 fatty acids are primarily found in fish oil.  An American Heart Association report suggested that omega-3 supplements may reduce death from coronary heart disease, possibly through a reduction in ischemia-induced sudden cardiac death.  The report found that the omega-e supplements do not reduce the incidence of recurrent nonfatal heart attacks.  The AHA stated that the benefits of taking omega-e supplements may outweigh the risks. 

There was a recent meta-analysis of 79 research studies with a combined 112,000 patients.  This showed that there was no significant benefits with long-chain omega-3 supplements for preventing all-cause mortality or cardiovascular mortality or cardiovascular events or irregular heartbeats or stroke. 

It is possible that omega-3 fatty acids that are found in foods may have different health effects than a capsule because they may replace consumption of less healthy foods (like decreasing saturated fat intake or salt) as well as provide other beneficial nutrients (like selenium, magnesium, calcium).

My advice is to spend your money on better food (fish anyone?!) and not on omega-3 supplements like mackerel, sardines, herring, oysters, salmon, anchovies, AND flax seed.

About drlesliegreenberg

I have been practicing as a family physician for over 20 years--as both an educator of physicians and clinician. From infancy to the elderly, I perform obstetrics and general medicine. I love my career and am passionate about my field of knowledge and my patients. Follow me on Facebook at Leslie Md Greenberg Medical Disclaimer The content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended as, nor should it be considered a substitute for, professional medical advice. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating any medical or health condition. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider.
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