It's becoming abundantly clear that chronic inflammation is a major risk factor for disease. Death from inflammatory disease is increasing rapidly. But a new study shows how you can reduce your risk from dying of inflammatory disease by at least 51%.
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This study involved 2,514 people over the age of 49. The researchers followed them for 15 years. Women (strangely not men) consuming the highest amount of omega-3 fatty acids had a 44% reduced risk of inflammatory disease mortality compared to women in the lowest third.
But this is where the study grows increasingly interesting. You might think that "omega-3" translates to marine oil. In both women and men, each standard deviation in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA is plant-derived omega-3) was inversely associated in death from inflammation. That means the less ALA they had, the more likely they were to die of inflammatory disease.
It gets better. Compared to those in the lowest third of intake of nuts, those in the middle third had a 32% less risk of inflammatory disease death and those in the highest third of consumption had a 51% less risk.
That's not all. According to the researchers, "Dietary intakes of long chain [long chain fatty acids are the fish-type oils] omega-3 and omega-6 PUFAs (fatty acids) and fish were not associated with inflammatory disease mortality." The authors close by reporting that more omega-3 from diet reduces inflammation risk in older women and that nuts, "but not fish," reduce inflammatory disease deaths.
Here we see part of the growing evidence that it's not the long-chain highly unsaturated fatty acids we find in marine life that protects against inflammation. It's the oils in plants, especially nuts, that do the job. It's true that you can increase your long-chain omega fatty acids by taking fish oil supplements. But that might not translate into better health. Studies have not confirmed that it does.
I continue to recommend against fish oil supplements for the overwhelming majority of people. Instead, take
Advanced EFA Formula for the best protection.