An Ounce Of Prevention Is Worth A Pound Of Cure!

A new study gauging the impact of consuming more fish oil showed a significant reduction both in inflammation and in anxiety among a group of healthy young people.

The findings suggest that if young participants can receive major improvements from specific dietary supplements, then the elderly and people at high risk for certain diseases might benefit even more.

The findings by a team of researchers at Ohio State University were published in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity. It is the latest from more than three decades of research into links between psychological stress and immunity.

Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, including EPA(eicosapentaenoic acid ) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), have long been recognized as beneficial additions to the diet. Earlier research suggested that EPA and DHA might play a role in reducing the level of cytokines in the body, the compounds that promote inflammation, and perhaps even reduce depression.

Psychological stress has repeatedly been shown to increase cytokine production so the researchers wondered if increasing omega-3 may decrease that process, reducing inflammation.

To test their theory, they turned to a familiar group of research subjects: medical students. Some of the earliest work these scientists did showed that stress from important medical school tests lowered students’ immune status.

“We hypothesized that giving some students omega 3 supplements  would decrease their production of proinflammatory cytokines, compared to other students who only received a placebo,” explained researchers from Ohio State Unversity’s departments of psychology and psychiatry.

“We thought the omega-3 would reduce the stress-induced increase in cytokines that normally arose from nervousness over the tests.”

The team assembled a field of 68 first- and second-year medical students who volunteered for the clinical trial. The students were randomly divided into six groups, all of which were interviewed six times during the study. At each visit, blood samples were drawn from the students who also completed a battery of psychological surveys intended to gauge their levels of stress, anxiety or depression. The students also completed questionnaires about their diets during the previous weeks.

Half the students received omega-3 supplements while the other half were given placebo pills.

“The supplement was probably about four or five times the amount of fish oil you’d get from a daily serving of salmon, for example,” explaining concentration ratio of omega 3 fish oil supplements used in the study.

Changes in the medical curriculum and the distribution of major tests throughout the year, rather than during a tense three-day period as was done in the past, removed much of the stress that medical students had shown in past studies.

“These students were not anxious. They weren’t really stressed. They were actually sleeping well throughout this period, so we didn’t get the stress effect we had expected,” the researchers said.

But the psychological surveys clearly showed an important change in anxiety among the students: Those receiving the omega-3showed a 20 percent reduction in anxiety compared to the placebo group.

An analysis of the of the blood samples from the medical students showed similar important results.

“We took measurements of the cytokines in the blood serum, as well as measured the productivity of cells that produced two important cytokines, interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFa),” said Ron Glaser, professor of molecular virology, immunology & medical genetics and director of the Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research.

“We saw a 14 percent reduction in the amounts of IL-6 among the students receiving the omega-3.” Since the cytokines foster inflammation, “anything we can do to reduce cytokines is a big plus in dealing with the overall health of people at risk for many diseases,” he said.

While inflammation is a natural immune response that helps the body heal, it also can play a harmful role in a host of diseases ranging from arthritis to heart disease to cancer. The study showed the positive impact omega-3 supplements in reducing both anxiety and inflammation.

The researchers said. “People should just consider increasing their omega-3 through their diet.”

In fact, some of the researchers acknowledged that already they take omega-3 supplements.

The study was supported in part by a grant from the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, a part of the National Institutes of Health.

Story Source: Ohio State University. .
Journal Reference: Omega-3 supplementation lowers inflammation and anxiety in medical students: A randomized controlled trial. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 2011;

Ohio State University (2011, August 1). Omega-3 reduces anxiety and inflammation in healthy students, study suggests.

This article is for informational and educational purposes only, and is not intended to provide medical advice,diagnosis or treatment. Contact your doctor or healthcare professional for medical and nutritional consultation.

Advertisements

Comments on: "Omega-3 Fish Oil Supplement​ation Reduces Anxiety and Inflammati​on" (1)

  1. […] Omega-3 Fish Oil Supplement ation Reduces Anxiety and Inflammati on (baktoedenherbalproducts.wordpress.com) […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: