Fish oils to prevent a wide range of diseases

Fish oils, known as omega-3 fatty acids, can be found in fish or in supplements. Some types of fish are richer in oils than others, such as mackerel, tuna, salmon, anchovy, sardines, herring, sturgeon, bluefish, trout etc. In general, fish oil supplements are made from these types of fish.

Fish oils are used for preventing and treating a wide range of conditions:

(1) Diseases affecting the heart and blood system. Some people use fish oil to lower blood pressure or triglyceride levels (fats related to cholesterol). Fish oil has also been tried for preventing heart disease or stroke.

(2) Fish is a “brain food” because some people eat fish to help with depression, psychosis, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Alzheimer’s disease etc.

(3) Some people use fish oil for dry eyes, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration (AMD)

(4) Women sometimes take fish oil to prevent painful periods, breast pain and complications associated with pregnancy such as miscarriage, high blood pressure late in pregnancy, and early delivery.

(5) Fish oil is also used for diabetes, asthma, developmental coordination disorders, movement disorders, dyslexia, obesity, kidney disease, weak bones (osteoporosis), certain diseases related to pain and swelling such as psoriasis, and preventing weight loss caused by some cancer drugs.

When fish oil is obtained by eating fish, the way the fish is prepared seems to make a difference. Eating broiled or baked fish appears to reduce the risk of heart disease, but eating fried fish or fish sandwiches not only cancels out the benefits of fish oil, but may actually increase heart disease risk....