Vidyya Medical News Service
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Volume 6 Issue 292 Published - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 18-Oct-2004 Next Update - 14:00 UTC 08:00 EST 19-Oct-2004
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Omega 3 fats found in oily fish are not all they're cracked up to be

Recent interest in unsaturated marine fats is centred around their potential protective benefits against cardiovascular disease. A large-scale systematic review of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and cohort studies sought to evaluate the effects of omega 3 fats on cardiovascular health. 48 RCTs were included in the review, with nearly 37,000 participants.

Combining the trials showed no clear evidence that dietary or supplemental omega 3 fats (from fish or plants) alter total mortality, combined cardiovascular events or cancers in people with, or at risk of cardiovascular disease, or in the general population. Neither is there evidence of harm to indicate that people should stop intentional consumption of omega 3 fats.

It is suggested that the current practice of recommending omega 3 fats after a myocardial infarction (heart attack) continue, but that omega 3 fats should not be recommended for people with angina who have not had a myocardial infarction.

Review title: Omega 3 fatty acids for prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease

The Cochrane Library Newsletter, Issue 4, 2004


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