Many people rely on health supplements to make up for dietary deficiencies. One such commonly used supplement is fish oil. Some of the benefits of fish oil, which contains omega-3, include reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke and chronic skin ailments like eczema. More people today take fish oil dietary supplements than ever before. A 2017 advisory from the American Heart Association (AHA) also recommends fish oil supplementation for people who have had a heart attack.
But recent findings, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), deviated from the AHA recommendation. Ten large clinical trials conducted recently to study omega-3 fatty acid supplements involved 78,000 participants, of whom 66 per cent had a history of coronary heart disease, 28 per cent had suffered a stroke and 37 per cent had Diabetes. The trial which lasted 4 years compared fish oil with placebo or no treatment in at least 500 participants.
These clinical trial outcomes suggest that fish oil dietary supplement capsules do little to protect people with heart disease. The supplements did not reduce the risk of coronary heart disease deaths, non-fatal heart attacks and fatal or non-fatal strokes. The supplements also didn’t protect against major vascular events in people with a history of heart disease, Diabetes, high cholesterol or statin use.
Meanwhile, researchers feel that people with heart disease should regularly monitor their blood pressure and blood lipids. They also recommend making lifestyle and dietary changes to include 2 to 3 servings of seafood a week. And for those who don’t eat seafood, they may benefit from fish oil supplements.