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Omega-3 supplements do not prevent diabetes

Thursday August 22nd, 2019

Consumption of fish oils and other omega-3 fats has no impact in preventing the development of type 2 diabetes, according to an analysis published today.

Omega-3 has been claimed as one of the healthiest oils – and fish oil supplements are popular.

The latest findings find no benefits from supplements – although the researchers say there is not enough evidence to assess the benefits of diets high in omega-3 foods, which include many nuts and seeds.

But a series of randomised control trials have found no benefits in preventing type 2 diabetes, according to the metanalysis conducted at the University of East Anglia, UK, and reported in the BMJ.

The trials also found no impact on glycaemic levels, insulin and glycated haemoglobin levels.

The study involved some 83 trials involving 121,000 people.

Researcher Dr Lee Hooper, from UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said: “Our previous research has shown that long-chain omega 3 supplements, including fish oils, do not protect against conditions such as heart disease, stroke or death. This review shows that they do not prevent or treat diabetes either.

“Omega-3 supplements should not be encouraged for diabetes prevention or treatment. If people do choose to take supplementary fish oil capsules to treat or prevent diabetes, or to reduce levels of triglycerides in their blood, then they should use doses of less than 4.4 grams per day to avoid possible negative outcomes.

“This large systematic review included information from many thousands of people over long periods. Despite all this information, we don’t see protective effects."

Fellow researcher Dr Julii Brainard said: “Oily fish can be a very nutritious food as part of a balanced diet - but we did not find enough trials that encouraged participants to eat more oily fish to know whether it is useful in preventing diabetes or improving glucose metabolism."

BMJ 22 August 2019

http://www.bmj.com/content/366/bmj.l4697

Tags: Diabetes | Diet & Food | UK News

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