Asthma/AllergyOmega-3 Fatty AcidsOmega-6 Fatty Acids

Do fatty acid supplements prevent allergic disease?

 Probably not, according to researchers at the University of Edinburgh, in the UK.

First, the details.

  • 10 articles (representing 6 unique studies) were included in the review.
  • 4 studies compared omega-3 supplements with placebo.
  • 2 studies compared omega-6 supplements with placebo.

And, the results.

  • There was no evidence of a reduced risk of allergic sensitization.
  • There was no evidence of a favorable effect on the immunological profile.
  • Meta-analyses on the combined data showed no consistent or clear benefit of omega-3 on atopic eczema, asthma, allergic rhinitis, or food allergy.
  • And no benefit of omega-6 on atopic eczema.

The bottom line?
“Supplementation with omega 3 and omega 6 oils is probably unlikely to play an important role as a strategy for the primary prevention of sensitization or allergic disease,” concluded the authors.

The results are contrary to the evidence from basic science and epidemiological studies

4/28/09 21:07 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.