People all over the world have been taking this nutritional supplement or eating fish to prevent heart attacks or strokes. However, according to an analysis that was made during a ten year study on four continents and with over 112,000 participants, researchers found out that the omega-3 supplements did not affect heart health.
You can imagine how this study looks to the fish oil industry, which makes 2.25 billion dollars a year just in the U.S.!
The paper was published this month in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. It examined to see if the omega-3 fatty acids naturally found in fish and plants or added in pills would affect the participants’ risks of heart attack, stroke or death. The results showed that there was a very small impact on mortality: 0.2% fewer people died when they consumed omega-3.
Lead author of the study, Lee Hooper said that there was a small correlation between ALA (an omega-3 fatty acid found in nuts and plants) which improved the circulation and heart health, but it had a weak effect.
No Benefits for the Heart, But It’s Still Healthy, Right?
You shouldn’t yet give up on oil fish products and supplements, because the study didn’t assess if omega-3 has or hasn’t an effect on brain function and other body functions.
These healthy fats are known (until proven wrong) to have a benefit in protecting nerves and build cell membranes and can only be found in oily fish, leafy greens and nuts because the body cannot produce them on its own.
The fact that fish oil is not a cause of heart-healthy and anti-inflammatory response is known for decades because many studies argued that it has no benefits for cardiovascular health.
However, the demand for fish oil pills still bloomed. In the present, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, almost 10% of Americans take this supplement.
Doris’s passion for writing started to take shape in college where she was editor-in-chief of the college newspaper. Even though she ended up working in IT for more than 7 years, she’s now back to what he always enjoyed doing. With a true passion for technology, Doris mostly covers tech-related topics.