Health Benefits of Fish Oil Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
Research has revealed the
importance of fish oil omega-3 essential fatty acids (EPA/DHA).
Numerous studies have indicated fish oils play an important role
for many aspects of health, including:
Studies suggest that fish oil promotes healthy lipid
and triglyceride metabolism, blood flow, vascular dilation and tone,
platelet function, endothelial function, and erythrocyte membrane
composition. Research also suggests the potential for fish oil to
contribute to healthy homocysteine metabolism. Furthermore, fish
oil may help to protect the cardiovascular system from the effects
of occasional stress. In a recent meta-analysis of 11 trials involving
over 15,000 subjects, fish oil was associated with providing overall
Fish oil acts in part by maintaining
healthy prostaglandin, cytokine and leukotriene production, supporting
connective tissue and cartilage integrity. It also plays a role
in moderating neutrophil activity, supporting joint comfort. Numerous
small double blind trials indicate that the omega-3
fatty acids in fish oil promote joint motility and joint comfort.
Another double blind, placebo–controlled, prospective study
revealed that fish oil modulates immune mediator activity as well
as provides support for joint flexibility.*
COGNITIVE/EMOTIONAL HEALTH (ADULTS)
Omega-3 fatty acids are important
components of neuronal cell membranes and are essential to cognitive
function. By supporting vascular health, fish oils
promote oxygen and nutrient delivery to the brain. Studies suggest
that healthy red blood cell membrane omega-3 fatty
acid concentration is associated with emotional well-being. Both
epidemiological and double blind placebo-controlled trials indicate
that fish oil supports positive mood. Furthermore,
dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids in adults
has been associated with maintaining healthy EPA/DHA
serum levels as well as a healthy EPA to arachidonic acid ratio,
providing potential support for mental function.*
COGNITIVE/VISUAL DEVELOPMENT (CHILDREN)
Fish oil promotes healthy mental
function and maturation of the central nervous system, including
support for cell health and neurotransmission. Essential fatty acids
are also vital constituents of the retina, helping to support healthy
visual function. EPA and DHA consumption by breast
fed infants and children born to mothers who supplement with fish
oils has demonstrated support for visual acuity and cognitive
development. A longitudinal study suggests that infants born to
mothers with higher DHA status demonstrated healthy
cognitive capacity at 12 and 18 months. A randomized double blind
study suggested that 4 year olds born to mothers who had taken fish
oil had healthy cognitive function. Another study suggested that
fish oil supplementation may enhance healthy night vision in children.
Several studies have also revealed a relationship between dietary
omega-3 fatty acids, healthy brain function and sleep patterns.*
Fish oil has demonstrated the potential
to support bronchial smooth muscle function by moderating leukotriene
and interleukin production. Double blind randomized studies indicate
that fish oil supplementation may promote healthy respiratory function
in children and adults. Another randomized controlled trial involving
10 elite athletes suggests that fish oil supplementation encourages
healthy post-exercise pulmonary function.*
Essential fatty acids appear to exert a beneficial
effect on the immune response by maintaining healthy cytokine activity
at the level of gene expression.*
Fish oil supplementation has been
associated with a soothing effect for the gastrointestinal (GI)
tract. In a double blind, placebo-controlled crossover trial, subjects
experienced positive support for GI comfort. A separate 6 month
trial revealed that fish oil supplementation maintained healthy
leukotriene production and immune cell activity in the colon.*
Fish oils promote vascular health,
supporting oxygen and nutrient delivery to the skin. Studies have
shown that omega-3 fatty acids protect keratinocytes and fibroblasts
from free radicals and immune mediators generated by sun exposure,
helping to soothe the skin. Additionally, they help promote elasticity
and hydration for smoother looking skin.*
Kris-Etherton P, Harris W, Appel L. Fish Consumption,
Fish Oil, Omega-3 Fatty Acids, and Cardiovascular Disease. Circulation.
Volker D, Fitzgerald P, Major G, Garg M. Efficacy of fish oil concentrate
in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. J Rheumatol. 2000 Oct;27(10):2343-6.
Kremer JM, Lawrence DA, et al. Effects of high-dose fish oil on
rheumatoid arthritis after stopping nonsteroidal antiinflammatory
drugs. Clinical and immune correlates. Arthritis Rheum. 1995 Aug;38(8):1107-14.
Sundrarjun T, Komindr S, Archararit N, et al. Effects of n-3 fatty
acids on serum interleukin-6, tumour necrosis factor-alpha and soluble
tumour necrosis factor receptor p55 in active rheumatoid arthritis.
J Int Med Res. 2004 Sep-Oct;32(5):443-54.
Khan F, Elherik K, Bolton-Smith C, Barr R, et al. The effects of
dietary fatty acid supple-mentation on endothelial function and
vascular tone in healthy subjects. Cardiovasc Res. 2003 Oct 1;59(4):955-62.
Thies F, Garry JM, Yaqoob P, et al. Association of n-3 polyunsaturated
fatty acids with stability of atherosclerotic plaques: a randomised
controlled trial. Lancet. 2003 Feb 8;361(9356):477-85.
Nestel P, Shige H, Pomeroy S, et al. The n-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic
acid and docosa-hexaenoic acid increase systemic arterial compliance
in humans. Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Aug;76(2):326-30.
Chan DC, Watts GF, Mori TA, et al. Randomized controlled trial of
the effect of n-3 fatty acid supplementation on the metabolism of
apolipoprotein B-100 and chylomicron remnants in men with visceral
obesity. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Feb;77(2):300-7.
von Schacky C, Angerer P, Kothny W, et al. The effect of dietary
omega-3 fatty acids on coronary atherosclerosis. A randomized, double-blind,
placebo-controlled trial. Ann Intern Med. 1999 Apr ;130(7):554-62.
Miyajima T, Tsujino T, Saito K, Yokoyama M. Effects of eicosapentaenoic
acid on blood pressure, cell membrane fatty acids, and intracellular
sodium concentration in essential hypertension. Hypertens Res. 2001
Tagawa T, Hirooka Y, Shimokawa H, et al. Long-term treatment with
eicosapentaenoic acid improves exercise-induced vasodilation in
patients with coronary artery disease. Hypertens Res. 2002;25(6):823-9.
Hamazaki T, Sawazaki S, Itomura M, et al. The effect of docosahexaenoic
acid on aggression in young adults. A placebo-controlled double-blind
study. J Clin Invest. 1996 Feb 15;97(4):1129-33.
Bucher HC, Hengstler P, Schindler C, Meier G. N-3 polyunsaturated
fatty acids in coronary heart disease: a meta-analysis of randomized
controlled trials. Am J Med. 2002 Mar;112(4):298-304.
Grundt H, Nilsen DW, Mansoor MA, Hetland O, Nordoy A. Reduction
in homocysteine by n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids after 1 year
in a randomised double-blind study following an acute myocardial
infarction: no effect on endothelial adhesion properties. Pathophysiol
Haemost Thromb. 2003 Mar-12
Young GS, Conquer JA, Thomas R. Effect of randomized supplementation
with high dose olive, flax or fish oil on serum phospholipid fatty
acid levels in adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
Reprod Nutr Dev. 2005 Sep-Oct;45(5):549-58.
Stevens LJ, Zentall SS, Abate ML, Kuczek T, Burgess JR. Omega-3
fatty acids in boys with behavior, learning, and health problems.
Physiol Behav. 1996 Apr-May;59(4-5):915-20.
Dunstan JA, Mori TA, Barden A, et al. Fish oil supplementation in
pregnancy modifies neonatal allergen-specific immune responses and
clinical outcomes in infants at high risk of atopy: a randomized,
controlled trial. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2003 Dec;112(6):1178-84.
Mickleborough TD, Murray RL, Ionescu AA, Lindley MR. Fish oil supplementation
reduces severity of exercise-induced bronchoconstriction in elite
athletes. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2003 Nov;168(10):1181-9.
Dry J, Vincent D. Effect of a fish oil diet on asthma: results of
a 1-year double-blind study. Int Arch Allergy Appl Immunol. 1991;95(2-3):156-7.
Nagakura T, Matsuda S, Shichijyo K, Sugimoto H, Hata K. Dietary
supplementation with fish oil rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty
acids in children with bronchial asthma. Eur Respir J. 2000 Nov;16(5):861-5.
Colombo J, Kannass KN, Shaddy DJ, et al. Maternal DHA and the development
of attention in infancy and toddlerhood. Child Dev. 2004 Jul-Aug;75(4):1254-67.
Helland IB, Smith L, Saarem K, Saugstad OD, Drevon CA. Maternal
supplementation with very-long-chain n-3 fatty acids during pregnancy
and lactation augments children's IQ at 4 years of age. Pediatrics.
Uauy R, Hoffman DR, Peirano P, Birch DG, Birch EE. Essential fatty
acids in visual and brain development. Lipids. 2001 Sep;36(9):885-95.
Wallace FA, Miles EA, Evans C, et al. Dietary fatty acids influence
the production of Th1-but not Th2-type cytokines. J Leukoc Biol.
Rangi SP, Serwonska MH, Lenahan GA, et al. Suppression by ingested
eicosapentaenoic acid of the increases in nasal mucosal blood flow
and eosinophilia of ryegrass-allergic reactions. J Allergy Clin
Immunol. 1990 Feb;85(2):484-9.
Aslan A, Triadafilopoulos G. Fish oil fatty acid supplementation
in active ulcerative colitis: a double-blind, placebo-controlled,
crossover study. Am J Gastroenterol. 1992 Apr;87(4):432-7.
Almallah YZ, El-Tahir A, Heys SD, Richardson S, Eremin O. Distal
procto-colitis and n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids: the mechanism(s)
of natural cytotoxicity inhibition. Eur J Clin Invest. 2000 Jan;30(1):58-65.
Storey A, McArdle F, Friedmann PS, Jackson MJ, Rhodes LE. Eicosapentaenoic
acid and docosahexaenoic acid reduce UVB- and TNF-alpha-induced
IL-8 secretion in keratinocytes and UVB-induced IL-8 in fibroblasts.
J Invest Dermatol. 2005 Jan;124(1):248-55.
For educational purposes only. Consult your physician
for any health problems.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food
& Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose,
treat, cure or prevent any disease.