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Omega-3s Linked to Reduce Arterial Stiffness

Individuals who are obese are more prone to arterial stiffness and increased risk of cardiovascular disease. A recent study suggests that taking supplements of omega-3 esters may improve arterial elasticity in obese people.

Participants in the study included 25 obese adults. Over the course of 12 weeks all of the participants underwent a 25% calorie reduction weight loss diet. Approximately half of the group (13 individuals) also took a daily supplement of 4 grams of omega-3, consisting of 46% EPA and 38% DHA.

At the conclusion of the study, participants in the omega-3 supplement group saw a 20% improvement in large arterial elasticity and a 22% improvement in small arterial elasticity. No change in arterial elasticity was seen in the diet only group.

Participants in the omega-3 supplement group also saw a 4% decrease in body weight a 4% decrease in waist circumference, 8% decrease in systolic and 5% decrease in diastolic blood pressure, a 12% decrease in insulin resistance and a 28% increase in adiponectin concentrations. These changes were all higher than those seen in the weight loss only group.

Researchers at the University of Western Australia and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in Perth, Australia, conducted the study. It was published in the April 2013 issue of the Journal of Nutrition.

Omega-3s have been linked to a number of health benefits, including improved brain health, alleviating arthritis pain, better moods, improved joint mobility, helping with age related macular degeneration, and aiding your immune system.

Because omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, it is especially important to make sure that they are a part of your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in DHA and EPA omega-3s, while ALA omega-3 fatty-acids are plant derived and can be found in flaxseed oil, vegetable oil, and walnuts.

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