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Eating More Fish May Lower Your Risk of Stroke

Most Americans do not get enough omega-3s via their diets. A recent analysis suggests that eating five or more portions of fish - our main dietary source of omega-3s - per week could reduce the risk of stroke by 13%.

The researchers examined 16 studies that included 402,127 participants in total. They found that people who ate five or more portions of fish weekly had a 13% reduced risk of all types of strokes compared to those who ate fish less than once a month.

The group of participants that ate fish five or more times per week also had a 17% lower risk of the type of stroke caused by a brain clot, known as ischemic stroke. The reduction in risk for hemorrhagic stroke, which occurs when a blood vessel bursts in the brain, was not as high.

This study was conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The results were published online ahead of print on October 3, 2012, in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, so it is very important to include them in your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in DHA and EPA omega-3s. ALA omega-3 fatty-acids are plant derived and can be found in flaxseed oil, vegetable oil, and walnuts.

If you feel you are not getting enough omega-3s through your diet, consider taking a high quality supplement that has been tested for purity and potency.

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