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Wednesday
Jan272010

Another Advantage of Fish Oil

Our bodies convert the DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) in fish oil into a compound called resolvin D2, which helps down regulate inflammation. This discovery, by investigators in London and at Harvard, may explain why fish oil helps with conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, and many other disorders that are linked to inflammation. The clinicians suggested that resolvin D2 could lead to new treatments for inflammatory conditions - they found that when they added it to white blood cells that stick to the inner lining of blood vessels (the endothelium) the cells making up this lining produced small amounts of nitric oxide, which discourages the white blood cells from adhering. The result: reduction of inflammation. Another advantage: unlike other anti-inflammatory drugs, resolvin D2 doesn't suppress the immune system. The researchers also found that resolvin D2 is a powerful chemical, and that effects can be measured with very small quantities. The study was published in the journal Nature on October 29, 2009.

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Reader Comments (5)

I came across another article you might be interested in looking at high dosage of omega 3 oils for pain relief in the Clinical Journal of Pain Feb 2010 edition. The case studies also observed a significant decrease in pain levels in those taking high doses of omega 3 oils.

January 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGary

Dr. Weil,

From the Anti-Inflammatory Diet Makeover Part 5: Grocery Shopping
Tip of the Day 1/30/2010

You recommended the following:

"Meat/Seafood/Fish: Choose fresh or frozen to widen your selection, and focus on seafood. When buying salmon, always opt for wild-caught Atlantic varieties."

Have you forgotten that Pacific wild-caught sockeye salmon from Alaska is much better in every aspect over Atlantic salmon, or any other salmon.

You should know this, after all isn't VitalChoice one of your better sponsers?

January 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDewey

Dewey
Right!
We fixed that.
Thank you!

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermoderator44@drweil.com

Is cod liver oil a good source, or is it something entirely different?

February 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

Cod liver oil is indeed something else. It is very high in Vitamin A, which is not all good news - a sustained high intake of Vitamin A is extremely toxic, even lethal, and so supplements of Vitamin A need to be carefully monitored. 15,000IU will cause severe liver damage with whole-body toxicity occurring at sustained levels of around 25,000IU. Antarctic explorer Mertz famously died of Vitamin A toxicity after being forced to killa nd eat his dogs - the livers of dogs have high concentrations of Vitamin A.

It is estimated that 75% of people in developed countries already exceed their RDA of Vitamin A - this, without supplementation being taken into account.

Vitamin A in all its forms is fat-soluble, meaning it builds up in fatty tissues and your body cannot easily eliminate excess as it can with water-soluble vitamins such as C.

So in short, while cod liver oil does have Omega 3 fatty acids and Vitamin D, the addition of high levels of Vitamin A make it very unsuitable for supplementation under almost any condition.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTim

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