26 Nov
New Study Determines Effects of Fish Oil and Vitamin D New Study Determines Effects of Fish Oil and Vitamin D

New Study Determines Effects of Fish Oil and Vitamin D

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Brigham and Women's Hospital recently concluded a 5.3 year-long trial -- known as VITAL, which stands for VITamin D and OmegA TriaL (proving that any acronym is possible, with enough words) -- to ascertain the potential health benefits of Vitamin D as well as omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil.

While speculation has abounded for years as to those benefits, some of which have been hinted at here and there, no randomized trial of a racially diverse population has been conducted to nail down conclusions. Until now.

The verdict: Omega-3 fish oil cuts down on the rate of heart attacks, but does not impact one's risk for cancer or stroke; vitamin D doesn't affect cancer, stroke or heart attack in a major way, but does appear to decrease cancer deaths that began one or two years after study participants started treatment. Heart attack risk among African American participants taking omega-3s was reduced significantly -- by 77 per cent.

The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled VITAL involved 25,871 50-plus men and women age from all over the U.S., including 5,106 African Americans. When they enrolled, those who participated reported no history of stroke, cancer, heart attack, or other forms of cardiovascular disease.

In a press release, JoAnn Manson, chief of the Division of Preventive Medicine at the Brigham, said, "Medical and public health authorities may look at the study results and decide if clinical guidelines should be updated. In the meantime, if you're already taking one or both of these supplements, there's no clear reason to stop. If you want to consider starting, our recommendation is to talk with your health care provider, but this does not need to be done on an urgent basis."


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Read 1814 times Last modified on Monday, 19 November 2018 03:13
Jim Lillie

Jim began writing for newspapers and designing for publishing companies at a time when both industries were just beginning to make the switch from manual to digital platforms. Jim lives in Boulder, Colorado with his teenage son.


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