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Rev Med Brux. 2006 Sep;27(4):S355-60.

[Omega-3 and health].

[Article in French]

Author information

  • 1Service de Médecine Interne/Endocrino-Diabétologie, C.H.U. Brugmann, Bruxelles.


N-3 PUFA (omega-3), and the n-6 PUFA (omega-6) are essential fatty acids. They must be absorbed by alimentation and play a very important role in the coagulation (inhibition of platelets aggregation) and in the inflammatory reaction (anti-inflammatory effects). Their effects have been studied in different sicknesses. In cardiovascular diseases, particularly in coronary diseases, studies demonstrated a decreased mortality in populations who eat an omega-3 rich diet or who take an omega-3 supplement. Among others, sudden death after myocardial infarction is decreased. In inflammatory diseases an effect seem to be found in some studies. In rheumatoid arthritis a decrease of different biological markers of inflammation and in some case a clinical improvement has been noticed. It may be the same in COPD. On the other hand, they seem not to give any protection against cancer in general. At this moment the recommendations for healthy people are to eat twice a week fat fish and to take omega-3 rich oils. For pathological cases, recommendations exist only for coronary disease: 1 g of fish oils : mixture of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids (EPA/DHA) should be given after a myocardial infarction.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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