Omega-3 Intake May Reduce Breast Cancer Risk

o3Increasing intakes of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids could cut the risk of developing breast cancer by up to 14%, according to a meta-analysis of 26 clinical studies.

The review contains data from more than 800,000 participants and over 20,000 cases of breast cancer – finding that women with the highest intake of omega-3 from marine sources were found to have a 14% reduction in risk of breast cancer compared with women with the lowest intake.

Writing in the British Medical Journal, Professor Duo Li and his team from Zhejiang University, China, found a dose-response relationship that showed a 5% lower risk of breast cancer per 0.1g/day or 0.1% energy/day increment of dietary marine omega-3.

“In this meta-analysis dietary intake of marine omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, but not alpha linolenic acid (ALA), was associated with a lower risk of breast cancer,” the team concluded – noting that their work “provides solid and robust evidence that marine omega-3 PUFA are inversely associated with risk of breast cancer.”

“Our findings have important public health implications. The prevention of breast cancer continues to be an important public health issue for researchers, especially with regard to the investigation of relations between breast cancer, diet, and lifestyle.”

– Professor Duo Li –


The team found that marine omega-3 PUFA was associated with a 14% reduction of breast cancer between the highest and lowest category of intake. However, no significant protective association was found for ALA – the plant based omega-3 PUFA. Further analysis indicated a dose response: each 0.1 g per day or 0.1% energy per day increment of intake was associated with a 5% reduction in risk.

Li and his team said that the finding, together with previous publications, “supports a protective role of marine omega-3 PUFA on the incidence of breast cancer.”

Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1136/bmj.f3706
“Intake of fish and marine n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and risk of breast cancer: meta-analysis of data from 21 independent prospective cohort studies”

Erythrocyte DHA Linked to Major Depression

MAJOR DEPRESSION – Omega-3 Fatty Acids, DHA

“Improvement of Major Depression is Associated with Increased Erythrocyte DHA,” Meyer BJ, Grenyer BF, et al, Lipids, 2013 Jun 4; [Epub ahead of print]. (Address:Metabolic Research Centre, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, NSW, 2522, Australia. E-mail:

In a randomized study of 95 people receiving treatment for major depression, a significant correlation was found between fish oil consumption, change in erythrocyte DHA, and the change in scores of depression. The dose administered was 8 x 1 g capsules per day of HiDHA (2 g DHA, 0.6 g EPA and 10 mg Vitamin E). According to researchers, further study of the relationship between DHA and depression is warranted.

Fish Oil May Improve Neural Cardiovascular Control in Humans


“Fish oil and neurovascular reactivity to mental stress in humans,” Carter JR, Schwartz CE, et al, Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol, 2013 Apr 1; 304(7): [Epub 2013 Feb 13]. (Address: Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology, Michigan Technological University, 1400 Townsend Dr., Houghton, MI 49931, USA. E-mail:

In an eight-week placebo-controlled study involving 67 non-hypertensive subjects, fish oil supplementation significantly attenuated both heart rate (HR) and muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA) responsiveness to mental stress. It also elicited a paradoxical blunting of calf vascular conductance. Researchers found that fish oil blunted HR reactivity to mental stress but did not alter blood pressure reactivity to mental stress. Fish oil blunted total MSNA reactivity to mental stress but did not alter MSNA burst frequency and burst incidence reactivity. Finally, fish oil significantly blunted CVC reactivity to mental stress but did not alter FVC reactivity. These findings support growing evidence that fish oil may have positive health benefits regarding neural cardiovascular control in humans.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s