CancerOmega-3 Fatty Acids

Taking stock: Evidence that omega-3 fatty acids might prevent colon cancer

There’s evidence — just not enough of it, yet.

Here’s what we know.

Researchers from Wageningen University in The Netherlands reanalyzed the results (meta-analysis) from 14 studies of the effects of fish consumption or n-3 fatty acids on the incidence of colorectal cancer and 4 studies reporting colorectal cancer death.

And, the results taken from

  • The highest consumption of fish oil was associated with a 12% reduction in the incidence of colorectal cancer.
  • There was no change in mortality.
  • For each extra 100 grams of fish consumed per week the risk of colorectal cancer incidence was reduced by 3%.

The bottom line?
So far, so good. But the authors conclude, “Existing evidence [supports] that n-3 fatty acids inhibit colorectal carcinogenesis, … but few data are available addressing this association.”

The answer? More research is needed!

12/16/07 19:25 JR

Hi, I’m JR

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