Omega-3 Fish Oil Protects Against the Harms of Air Pollution

Here I am blogging about the benefits of omega-3s again. It seems that every week more research is published on the health protecting effects of omega-3s. This week is no exception. In a study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, twenty-nine healthy adults were given either 3 grams daily of fish oil (containing about 2 grams EPA + DHA) or olive oil for four weeks before being exposed for two hours to concentrated fine and ultrafine particulate matter (that science-ese for air pollution).

Those people who had taken fish oil were protected against the negative heart effects produced by the air pollution, including decreased heart rate variability (a measure of the beneficial effects of the autonomic nervous system on the heart), and increased triglycerides and VLDL (VLDL usually goes up when triglycerides go up).

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that air pollution causes two million deaths per year worldwide. Everyone is exposed to air pollution even if you live in the middle of nowhere. Many studies have linked air pollution to poor heart health. I’ve written about it in my books and I’ve also blogged about it here. That omega-3s protect heart health even in the face of acute damage exerted by air pollution is pretty amazing if you ask me. Did you need another reason to supplement with fish oil? This is certainly it.

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