Supplementing your diet with omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oils could reduce your risk of breast cancer by a third according to a U.S. study.
Researchers at the University of Washington and the University of California studied around 35,000 post menopausal women over a period of seven years to assess the impact of fish oil supplements on breast cancer risk.
The study, published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, was part of a larger study into the general impact of various supplements on cancer risk. It took into account other risk factors for breast cancer such as age, race, diet, reproductive history and the use of hormone replacement drugs.
What did the Study Show?
The conclusions of the study were that participants who took an omega 3 fatty acid rich fish oil supplement had a 32% reduced risk of developing ductal carcinoma, or ductal breast cancer.
Ductal carcinoma is the most common form of breast cancer, responsible for around 80% of cases. It appeared that fish oil supplements had no impact on risk of the less common lobular breast cancer.
Should all Post Menopausal Women Take Fish Oil Supplements?
The researchers were happy to admit that this study had some pitfalls, not least that it relied on women self reporting their supplement consumption and risk factors. They agree that more detailed research is necessary before fish oils can be recommended as a preventative treatment for breast cancer.
However, there are a wide variety of other benefits to taking omega 3 fatty acids or fish oils, and these should not be overlooked.
- Earlier this year fish oil was branded The Elixir of Life after it was discovered that it could extend the life span of cells.
- Research is currently taking place at Harvard University into whether fish oils can reduce the risk of various cancers, heart disease, and strokes.
- A diet rich in omega 3 can help to reduce the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Omega 3 can reduce levels of bad cholesterol, reducing your risk of atherosclerosis and the diseases linked to this.
How to Include Omega 3 Fish Oils in Your Diet
Eating oily fish at least twice a week is a great way to make sure you include omega 3 in your diet. Good sources of omega 3 include herrings, sardines, mackerel, salmon, trout and tuna.
For those that don’t like fish, or at least don’t like the idea of eating it twice a week, there are some other foods that contain omega 3. These include some vegetable oils, such as linseed, flaxseed and walnut.
However, because the body is able to absorb only a limited amount of these sources of omega 3, and evidence suggests that these fatty acids may not give you the same protection against coronary heart disease as the oils in fish, you may want to consider an omega 3 supplement such as Omega 3 Plus that comes in softgel capsule form. Two capsules should be taken each day. The product is nitrogen distilled for purity and to prevent unnecessary oxidation. The vast majority of the mercury, which is present in fish, is removed during this process.
Try Omega 3 Plus to boost your omega 3 levels, or if you have a reasonably good diet with lots of fruit and vegetables, you may benefit from Omega Balance instead. Getting children to eat regular servings of oily fish is never easy so check out Omega Kids for a safe way to introduce omega 3 fatty acids into your child’s diet.