Saturday, June 11, 2016

Omega-3 fats and Heart Health

Omega-3 fats are among the most studied nutrients for cardiovascular health Observational studies consist ently show that people who eat the most fish, especially fatty fish, are at reduced risk for heart attacks, stroke and other  Coronary problems. This benefit was first suggested by studies of Inuit in Greenland, who eat lots of fatty fish (and  marine mammals, also rich in omega- 3s) and have low rates of cardiovascular disease.

Exactly how fish reduces the risk is not clear. Research, mostly done in the lab, has found that omega-3 fats in fish oil  help prevent arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms) and blood clots, reduce inflammation, make arteries more flexible, lower triglycerides (substantially, when taken in high doses) and reduce blood pressure (modestly).

Other factors may also be involved. The AHA advises people with heart disease to consume 1 gram (1,000 illigrams) a day of omega-3s, preferably from fatty fish. For people with very high triglycerides, it recommends 2 to 4 grams a day from supplements, under a doctor’s care. Prescription high dose omega-3 capsules have been approved by the FDA specifically to treat very high triglyceride levels. A research study in Australia has proved that fish consumption can be used to cure hypertension and obesity. The study also discovered that a weight-loss diet which includes a regular amount of fish consumption can be effective.
About 10 percent of Americans take fish oil (omega-3) capsules, which are now the third most widely used dietary supplement after multivitamins and calcium.

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