People who received omega-3 from fish oil supplements in randomized clinical trials had lower risks of heart attack and other cardiovascular disease (CVD) events than those who received placebo only, according to a new meta-analysis from Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health and Brigham and Women's Hospital.
Researchers found an association between daily omega-3 supplementation and reduced risk of most cardiovascular disease outcomes, including heart attack, coronary heart disease death and CVD death, but are not stroke benefits have been reported. Additionally, higher doses of omega-3 fish oil supplements appeared to provide an even greater risk reduction.
“This meta-analysis provides the most up-to-date evidence on the effects of omega-3 supplementation on the risk of multiple outcomes of cardiovascular disease. We found significant protective effects of daily omega-3 supplementation against most CVD outcome risks and the associations seemed to be directly related to the quantities taken, "said first author Yang Hu, a post-professor in the Harvard Department of Nutrition. Chan School.
In this new analysis, the researchers performed an updated meta-analysis that included three recently completed large-scale studies, which increased the sample size by 64%. The total population analyzed by Hu and colleagues included more than 120.000 adults in 13 randomized trials worldwide. The analysis included the VITAL study, the largest randomized omega-3 study to date.
The results showed that people who took omega-3 fish oil supplements daily, compared to those who took a placebo, lowered the risk for most cardiovascular diseases except stroke, including a reduced risk by 8% for heart attack and death from coronary heart disease (CHD).
The association was particularly evident at higher doses of omega-3 fish oil supplementation. This finding may suggest that the omega-3 supplementation dosage above 840 mg / day used in most randomized clinical trials may provide a greater reduction in the risk of cardiovascular disease.
"Although public health recommendations should focus on increasing fish consumption, a heart-healthy diet, physical activity and other healthy living practices, this study suggests that omega-3 supplementation may have a role in patients who are not very sensitive to health recommendations, "said author JoAnn Manson, head of Brigham and Women's Hospital's preventive medicine division and professor in the epidemiology department of Harvard Chan School. Manson is also the director of the large-scale omega-3 VITAL study.