Recent research has shown that fish oil may be beneficial in supporting cognitive function by helping the body manage stress and enhance mood. It may also promote a healthy complexion. In an article published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the effects of omega-3 fish oil supplementation was shown to be beneficial for healthy cognitive and cardiac functioning. The study shows that supplementing with fish oil daily can rapidly raise the levels of EPA and DHA in cardiac tissue. This is important because both EPA and DHA have been proven to help maintain normal plasma triglycerides. In addition, DHA has been shown to help maintain blood pressure and blood viscosity. This study also showed an inverse relationship between EPA/DHA and arachidonic acid (AA), an omega-6 fatty acid. As EPA and DHA increased in atrial (heart tissue) phospholipids, AA decreased.1
For good or ill, everything mothers do during pregnancy affects the health of their babies. That includes taking daily supplements, according to a new study that found that children born to mothers who take fish-oil pills while pregnant may benefit from an early boost in immunity.
Researchers randomly assigned about 1,000 pregnant women to take daily supplements of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a major omega-3 fatty acid in fish oil, or a placebo. The babies’ health was evaluated when they were 1 month, 3 months and 6 months old. At every stage, babies whose mothers took fish-oil pills were healthier than those whose mothers didn’t. At 1 month, they were 24% less likely to have cold symptoms such as coughing, nasal congestion and runny noses. At 3 months, they were 14% less likely to be sick. By 6 months, infants whose mothers had taken DHA developed cold symptoms as often as babies whose moms took the placebo, but their colds didn’t last as long.
In the study, expectant mothers got 400 mg of DHA daily, starting at 18 to 22 weeks, which is significantly more than the 200 mg that the average American woman consumes in a day.
Sources: Pediatrics; Journal of Family Practice; Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine; U.N.