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Fish Oil Flip-Flops Infuriate Reader

Fish Oil Flip-Flops Infuriate Reader

Q. I am quite confused and annoyed about reports that fish oil isn’t beneficial. I’ve heard for years that fish oil supplements are good for all kinds of things, like depression and anxiety, skin and joints and general heart health. So it is a huge disappointment to read that it doesn’t help the heart after all. Was all the hype a big fat lie?

A. An analysis of 20 clinical trials involving more than 68,000 people found that fish oil supplements did not reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke or sudden death (JAMA, Sept. 12, 2012). Eating fish, on the other hand, has been shown to add years to life expectancy.

A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine (April 2, 2013) concluded that healthy older people who ate at least two servings of fatty fish a week were less likely to suffer fatal heart rhythm changes or strokes.

The study followed almost 2,700 senior citizens for 16 years and measured their blood levels of omega-3 fats. This is far more reliable than simply asking people how much fish they eat.

If you would like suggestions for healthy and delicious meals that feature fish, you may want to check out our book, Recipes & Remedies From The People’s Pharmacy. In it, you’ll find such delights as Fish Tacos with Radish and Lime, Horseradish Crusted Salmon with Cranberry Catsup, Pescado al Cilantro, Salmon with Fava Bean & Spring Pea Mash, and Spicy Fresh Tuna Salad, along with one of our favorite fish-for-breakfast combos.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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