Are Fish Oil Supplements Worth Taking?

Brayden Willis

We all know that eating fish is good for the heart. It appears that omega-3 fatty acids are most responsible for the protection. Yes, fish is healthy food choice, but what about fish oil supplements? Some people don¶t have access to quality seafood, and some can¶t stomach the taste. Can these people enjoy the benefits of fish oils, without eating whole fish? At this time, there have been no major studies performed that compare dietary fish to fish oil supplements. However, fish oil supplements alone have been shown to improve health. Three fairly recent studies have shown benefits in inflammation, cholesterol, and heart function. Most people are getting plenty of omega-6 fatty acids in their diets. These fatty acids are abundant in many vegetable oils and dressings. It seems that a high omega-6 to omega-3 ratio is somewhat responsible for an in, the more active must be maintained in order to prevent inflammation. and the many diseases characterized by an inappropriate inflammatory response. This was the basis of Jodi McDaniel and her associates¶ research at The Ohio State University (2010). The study was randomized, singled-blinded, and placebo-controlled. It involved 30 healthy young adults. Various fatty acids were quantified in plasma using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The omega6/omega3 ratio was the focus. The results showed that omega-3 supplementation was successful in lowering the ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 in the plasma from 14:1 to 6:1 in just four weeks. This

Omega-3 supplementation seems to positively impact the physical structure of the heart (Metcalf. Laidlaw and her team were able to statistically estimate a 43 percent reduction in the 10-year risk of myocardial infarction. importantly.. if there are any differences in the benefits observed from supplementation over whole fish. omega-3 fatty acid supplements have been shown to lower plasma triglycerides and cholesterol (Laidlaw. Inflammatory markers could be quantified in the blood.showed that the body is able to adequately absorb the fatty acid in supplement form. but other factors could be examined. and a variety of lesserknown benefits. As far as blood cholesterol was improved blood lipid profiles. Perhaps more studies could be done that have two experimental controls. It seems that this very study could be expanded to look at the occurrence of inflammatory responses over time. . Thus it can be seen. After observing a drop in these values among the experimental group. This would show if the ratio of fatty acids actually shows correlation with inflammatory response when altered by supplementation alone. they are not resulting from a lack of absorption. et al. decreased inflammation. Not only would one be able to identify which method delivers a higher portion of omega-3 fatty acid to the blood. Further studies need to be designed and carried out that include other factors of fish diets than fatty acids alone. 2003). one with dietary fish intake and the other with fish oil supplementation. or inflammatory disease or symptoms could be quantified.

It has also been observed that the inflammatory response is lessened by supplementation (Johnson. Perhaps more studies could be done that have two experimental controls. It involved 30 healthy young adults. one with dietary fish intake and the other with fish oil . Various fatty acids were quantified in plasma using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. et al. It has been proposed that an omega-6 and omega-3 ratio must be maintained in order to prevent inflammation. The results showed that omega-3 supplementation was successful in lowering the ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 in the plasma from 14:1 to 6:1 in just four weeks. thus preventing arrhythmias. 2007). Thus it can be seen. This was the basis of Jodi McDaniel and her associates¶ research at The Ohio State University (2010). and the many diseases characterized by an inappropriate inflammatory response. Further studies need to be designed and carried out that include other factors of fish diets than fatty acids alone. Upon supplementation. they are not resulting from a lack of absorption. Critical Review Article 2 If the most significant benefit of the consumption of omega-3 fatty acids is cardiovascular health. singled-blinded. if there are any differences in the benefits observed from supplementation over whole fish. two derivatives of omega-3 fatty acid. the second most is a decreased inflammation response.. 1997). The omega-6/omega3 ratio was the focus. EPA and DHA became more involved in the cardiac phospholipids.et al. This showed that the body is able to adequately absorb the fatty acid in supplement form. and placebocontrolled. The study was randomized.

F.supplementation. W. 192(1-2).. Effects of supplementation with fish oil-derived n-3 fatty acids and gamma-linolenic acid on circulating plasma lipids and fatty acid profiles in women. Ahijevych. (2003).. & Hjøorne. & Chilton... The American Journal Of Clinical Nutrition. J. 32(1). Acta Medica Scandinavica. Bang. It seems that this very study could be expanded to look at the occurrence of inflammatory responses over time. T. H. 14351444. J. (2010). Stegner. McDaniel. C. 64-80. J.... Effect of n-3 oral supplements on the n-6/n-3 ratio in young adults. H.. Manson. M. but other factors could be examined. Western Journal Of Nursing Research. or inflammatory disease or symptoms could be quantified. N. . Dyerberg.. This would show if the ratio of fatty acids actually shows correlation with inflammatory response when altered by supplementation alone. The New England Journal Of Medicine. Johnson. M. 1113-1118. Acta Medica Scandinavica.. D. Dietary supplementation with gamma-linolenic acid alters fatty acid content and eicosanoid production in healthy humans. (2002). K. Stampfer.. M.. Inflammatory markers could be quantified in the blood. P. The Journal Of Nutrition. & Ma. (1976). Campos. Chilton. 77(1). 85-94. 37-42. Fonteh.. Not only would one be able to identify which method delivers a higher portion of omega-3 fatty acid to the blood. J. J. 200(1-2). Surette. M.. A... M. Ridker. (1997). Reference Page Albert. (1972). The composition of food consumed by Greenland Eskimos. H. Willett. Laidlaw. & Belury.. & Dyerberg. 127(8). 346(15). Blood levels of long-chain n-3 fatty acids and the risk of sudden death. Bang. J. & Holub. Plasma lipids and lipoproteins in Greenlandic west coast Eskimos. B.. Swan. 69-73.

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