Ken's Wellness Wednesdays

Does Fish Oil Prevent Heart Disease?

The popularity of fish oil supplements is due to countless observational studies showing inverse associations between higher fish consumption, and lower risk of heart disease. However, recent studies have called into question the idea that taking fish oil supplements will prevent or reduce incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD). A number of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) testing omega‐3 supplementation (usually using a moderate‐dose combination of EPA and DHA), compared with placebo, have largely shown little, or no, benefit from supplementation.

This inconsistency between observational studies and RCTs has cast doubt on the relationship between fish oil supplements and heart disease prevention.

So, to address this discrepancy, researchers did a meta‐analysis, which included data from 13 randomized controlled trials on the subject of “Marine Omega‐3 Supplementation and Cardiovascular Disease”.

The 13 RCTs involved 127,477 participants, of whom 59.7% were male. On average, the participants were 64.3 years of age at baseline, and were treated for 5 years. And, subjects were not low risk, given that 39.7% of participants had diabetes, and 72.6% used cholesterol‐lowering medications. The ranges of marine omega‐3 supplementation dose was from 376 to 4000 mg daily.

And the results were...“Daily marine omega‐3 supplementation is effective in lowering risk for coronary and most other cardiovascular end points, including myocardial infarction, coronary heart disease death, total coronary heart disease, cardiovascular disease death, and total cardiovascular disease; no benefits, however, were found for stroke.”

As well, it was observed that “greater cardiovascular benefits may be achieved at higher doses of marine omega‐ 3 supplementation.” In other words, with regards to fish oil, the more the better. (Study)With regards to fish oil showing no benefit protecting against stroke, as an earlier blog of mine showed, eating fish 3 or more times per week, does provide protection against stroke. In this blog I go into the structural differences between eating fish, and using a fish oil supplement, indicating how this discrepancy does make sense, scientifically. (FISH CONSUMPTION, HEART DISEASE, AND STROKE)

Finally I will mention that our krill oil product, NutriKrill, is a viable alternative to fish oil, one requiring far less, and far smaller, capsules, given its ability to absorb 5 times better than most fish oils.

Krill oil contains phospholipid bound omega-3s, which have been shown to be more bio-efficient than other marine sources. In other words, krill’s omega-3s take a more effective path to tissues and organs—in this case the heart and surrounding arteries and tissues.

For more on the subject of krill oil and preventing heart disease, visit this site: Krill OIl Research


Ken Peters has been in the health and nutrition field for over 30 years as a researcher, writer, and nutritional consultant.  He works in product research and development for NutriStart Vitamin Company, among others.  
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#14 - 755 Vanalman Ave
Victoria, BC - V8Z 3B8

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