August 5, 2010

Holy Mackerel! Research identifies fatty fish oil’s many health benefits.

robertBy Robert J. Scranton, D.C.
Fibromyalgia Centers of America

It’s no fish story that those who include seafood as a staple in their diet benefit from the ingestion of high levels of omega-3 fatty acids — known to reduce the risks for heart-related diseases, age-related cognitive decline, abnormal brain development and functioning, even obesity and mood disorders. Now, new studies have shown that it is the oil from fatty fish (salmon, herring, sardines and mackerel) that may offer the most health benefits.

During the course of a 10-year study conducted in Sweden, it was established that the consumption of fatty fish oils might inhibit a commonly found receptor for kidney cancers in women, the Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC), which triggers more than 80% of kidney cancers. Consistent long-term intake of fatty fish oil reduced the RCC risk by up to 74% in the Swedish women tracked for the report. At the same time, the intake of fatty fish oils triggered an increase in the level of serum vitamin D in these women. Low levels of vitamin D are believed to trigger the development and progression of RCC.

“You might say that fatty fish oil is phat!”. “Even lean fish — although to a lesser extent — provide similar health benefits.”. My chiropractic offices are located in Rock Island, IL, and we follow
developments in chiropractic science closely.

Consuming fish oil or eating raw, baked or broiled fish — not fried — can also protect your heart’s electrical system by decreasing the risk of fatal heart-rhythm disorders. Omega-3 fats have been found to benefit a healthy heart rhythm.

In addition, according to a study by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, fish oil consumption by the elderly prevented a decline in heart rate variability that was caused by same-day exposure to indoor airborne pollutants (which can trigger arrhythmia and sudden death.)

This study also found that a diet including fish at least once a week has other significant health benefits for the elderly. These finds included a 60% lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease as well as a 10% slower rate of annual age-related cognitive decline (and a 13% slower rate decline when fish was consumed more than once a week). In addition, seafood and by products decreased incidences of strokes because high levels of omega-3 fatty acids (especially DHA or docosahexaenoic acid) are crucial for normal brain functioning.

There’s even more to this school of thought.

Several epidemiological studies find a correlation between omega-3 fatty acids intake and mood disorders like depression — which are affected by an omega-3 fatty acids deficit. In addition, people suffering from coronary artery disease may benefit from omega-3 fatty acids as well since there is an established link between the disease and depression.

An increased omega-3 intake, even through supplementation, may have therapeutic benefits.
Fishing for compliments about a reduced waistline?

A study conducted by the University of South Australia noted that daily omega-3 fatty acids intake — when combined with exercise — can aid in weight loss because fatty acids increase blood flow to the muscles during exercise and thereby assist in fat burning.

The studies are overwhelming. Will people change their dietary habits due to the promise this research shows? It’s certainly food for thought. For those wishing to obtain the highest quality Omega-3 fish oil available we recommend the following site.

Reference Material:
Alicja Wolk, Susanna C. Larsson, Jan-Erik Johansson, and Peter Ekman: Long-term Fatty Fish Consumption and Renal Cell Carcinoma Incidence in Women, JAMA, September 20, 2006, Vol. 296, No. 11
Journal of the American College of Cardiology, July 12, 2006.
Fish Oil Prevents Potentially Deadly Heart Rate Variability, Science Daily, December 2005.
Fish Consumption May Be Linked to Reduced Cognitive Decline, Medscape, Oct. 11, 2005.
Gordon Parker, Neville A. Gibson, Heather Brotchie, Gabriella Heruc, Anne-Marie Rees and Dusan Hadzi-Pavlovic: Omega-3-Fatty Acids and Mood Disorders, The American Journal of Psychiatry, June 2006.
Reuters, Australian Study Finds Fish Oil Helps Weight Loss, July 28, 2006.