Omega 3 Article in Newspaper

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Omega 3 Article in Newspaper

Postby Charles Boddington » Fri Aug 09, 2013 9:06 am

Has anybody else seen this article?

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healt ... -risk.html

It basically says, Men who take omega-3 supplements for a health boost may be putting themselves at higher risk of prostate cancer. I take Omega 3's all the time for my dry eye. Should I take this article seriously? Are there any alternatives to Omega 3's?

Thanks in advance for any advice
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Re: Omega 3 Article in Newspaper

Postby Andrew Matheson » Sun Aug 11, 2013 5:20 am

Its very difficult to make sense of all the conflicting statistics in cases like this. Various previous studies have apparently shown the opposite, a protective effect. The COX-2 inflammatory system may be linked to prostate cancer risk and is suppressed by omega 3 intake, for example.

Part of the problem I think is that it is very difficult to look at only one variable. Oily fish contain heavy metals and other toxins which may have an effect on cancer development. In high quality omega 3 supplements all impurities such as these are removed. Cancer patients often adhere to a better diet and so it might be expected that they as a result may have elevated blood omega 3 levels.

Some would advise, to be on the safe side,that older men taking omega 3 supplements, especially with a family history of prostate cancer, should have periodic screening exams by their GP. Even this advice is not straightforward, as many men with an elevated PSA test do not go onto develop prostrate cancer and a significant number of prostate cancer sufferers have a low PSA reading.

What we are sure of is that refined fish and flax supplements in the right quantities definitely do have an anti-inflammatory effect in dry eye and promote the production of high quality meibomian secretions, both required by dry eye patients.

In view of this recent publication, I would discuss the pros and cons of taking an omega 3 supplement with my older male dry eye patients, allowing them to make up their own mind. I fall into this age group and will be continuing with my theratears nutrition supplement.

The majority of dry eye patients are female or are younger men with predominantly evaporative dry eye, both of who I feel benefit greatly from omega 3 supplementation as part of their dry eye routine. I will be continuing to recommend enhanced fish and flax oil supplements to most of my patients
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