Patients recovering from heart attack who took fish oil supplements in high doses got better heart function and minimal scarring, experts reveal.
Study senior author Dr. Raymond Kwong points out that it’s not exactly clear how the fatty acids contributed to the healing process, but they show promising results.
In the study, which lasted for six months, 360 survivors of heart attack were under observation. Half received a high dose of omega three supplements for the duration of the study, while the others were given placebo pills.
When a heart attack occurs, a part of the heart lacks oxygen and that part never fully recovers. So the healthy tissue has to work more to get the normal pumping performance of the heart. This leads to the forming of scar tissue.
Doctors usually prescribe 1 to 2 grams of fatty acid supplements per day, if a patient has high triglycerides.
Omega 3 acids are important ingredients of cell membranes that help the immune system and the brain function.
Using heart scans, the scientists found a 6 percent better heart functioning level and less scarring in patients who were given 4 grams of fatty acids. However, further studies need to be conducted to clarify the link between high doses of omega 3 and lower mortality rates.
MRI technology made it easier for scientists to have a closer look at the heart. Apparently, the Omega 3 acids reduce swelling and allow the heart to contract better.
Fish oil is a popular supplement which is believed to lower blood pressure, slow the artery clogging, and decrease inflammation.
Although fatty fish has got the acids ideal for restoring heat health, one would need to eat an 8-ounce salmon serving every day, for six months, to get the four grams recommended dose.
Sources of fish oil include mackerel, salmon, and trout. The body needs this substance but cannot produce Omega 3 fatty acids itself.
These supplements do not however, replace a balanced diet and an active lifestyle, stresses Kwong. People should ask their doctor before taking supplements.
Do you take fatty acid supplements? What’s your opinion on fatty acids from fish oil supplements? Please let us know below.
Image Source – Flickr