5. Feb, 2017

Omega 3s and Coronary Heart Disease update

A new meta-analysis (a statistical analysis that combines the results of many scientific studies) of the effectiveness of Omega 3s (EPA & DHA) in lowering Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) found them particularly helfpul in high risk groups.

High risk groups included participants in 18 Randomised Clinical Trials with elevated triglyceride and LDL cholesterol.

Higher intakes (at least 1 gram) of EPA & DHA were also found to significantly reduce the risk of any CHD event in 16 prospective Cohort studies (which follow a group of people over a long period of time).

The best way to get your Omega 3s is through fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, blue eye trevalla and tuna, or fortified food. Vegans can get theirs through seaweed or algal-oil supplements.

The National Heart Foundation recommends healthy adults aim for 500mg, and those with cardiovascular disease 1g, of EPA & DHA daily. This should be done through a combination of oily fish, fortified foods and fish oil capsules or liquid. They recommend 2–3 serves of fish (including oily fish) or seafood every week. One serve is 100–150 g or about the size of your whole hand.

References:

Alexander, DD, Miller, PE, Van Elswyk, ME, Kuratko, CN & Bylsma, LC'A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials and Prospective Cohort Studies of Eicosapentaenoic and Docosahexaenoic Long-Chain Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Coronary Heart Disease Risk', Mayo Clinic Proceedings, vol. 92, no. 1, pp. 15-29.

National Heart Foundation of Australia 2017, https://www.heartfoundation.org.au/