The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Recommendations for n3 fatty acids for heart health

    Many studies show a correlation between n-3 fatty acids (FAs; aka omega-3 fatty acids) and cardiovascular disease (CVD).

    Now, a review of published studies in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition gets specific.

    It concludes that increased consumption of the n-3 FAs (ie, eicosapentaenoic acid [EPA)] and docosahexaenoic acid [DHA], but not alpha-linolenic acid), either through fish or supplements or both, reduces the rates of mortality, myocardial infarction (MI; heart muscle damage from a blockage), and sudden cardiac death (SCD; death due to electrical problems in the heart).

    Evidence was strongest in secondary-prevention trials (ie, patients who have had MI or SCD previously), but was also present in primary-prevention studies (ie, patients who did not have these events previously).

    In an accompanying editorial, intake recommendations from the American Heart Association and several international health agencies are reported.

    • For patients with known CVD: approximately 1 gram EPA+DHA per day
    • For those without CVD: 400 to 500 mg EPA+DHA per day (approximately 2 servings of oily fish/week).

    Despite concern about toxins in fish, proper selection and preparation of fish results in a low risk from toxins according to the editorial, especially when compared with low intakes of EPA and DHA.

    7/7/06 00:23 JR

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