Many people today include vitamin supplements on their diet. However, a growing body of evidence appears to suggest that these supplements may not be as effective as we think. One study, in particular, that was published earlier this year found that some of the major vitamin supplements including Vitamin C and calcium didn’t really have that much of an effect in improving your health.
There has also been a lot of talk about the benefits of fish oil. This is what many people refer to as Omega-3. For a very long time, it has often been assumed that regular intake of fish oil could in fact help improve heart health. A new review led by the University of East Anglia appears to suggest otherwise. The review found that Omega-3 supplements offered very little benefits to the people who take them.
Don’t mistake the findings of this review though. Omega-3 is essential in improving your health. Omega-3 fats like alpha-linolenic acid or ALA, docosahexaenoic acid, and eicosapentaenoic acid will definitely help you. However, the study by the University of East Anglia found that supplements like fish oil sold over the counter weren’t that effective in providing the benefits of these fats.
The study analyzed results from 79 trials involving 112,000 people. The results showed no difference in the rates of heart attacks between people who used Omega-3 supplements and those who didn’t. There were also no significant differences in death rates between people who took the supplements and those who didn’t.
According to Lee Hooper, a researcher at the Norwich Medical School, and leader of the team that conducted this study, there’s not enough evidence to suggest that taking Omega-3 supplements had any significant health benefits. Hooper added that it was in fact much better to include oily fish into your diet than take supplements. She argued that oily fish offers more than just the Omega-3. You will also get rich proteins that can replace other protein sources that come with lots of saturated fats.
The review by the University of East Anglia also noted that there was some evidence that suggested one Omega-3 called alpha-linolenic acid or ALA led to slight protection of the heart and other circulation diseases. ALA can be found in walnuts and canola oil. Nonetheless, the effect was very small.
The use of fish oil has often been promoted rigorously as a health option in dealing with potential heart issues and even cognitive health. One study involving 3,000 children in Durham looked to assess the role of fish oil in enhancing academic performance in GCSE tests. Fish oil was given to the 3,000 children analyzed. Scientists took issue with the methodology used arguing that without a control group the results wouldn’t be accurate. In addition to this, over 2,000 kids also dropped out of the study along the way. However, when it emerged that 832 out of the 1,000 who had remained scored above 80% in GCSE tests, the media took over the story and started promoting fish oil as a crucial supplement for a healthy living. But it turns out that this buzz was in fact ill-informed.