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J Nutr. 2013 Apr;143(4):437-41. doi: 10.3945/jn.112.169359. Epub 2013 Jan 30.

Supplementation with n3 fatty acid ethyl esters increases large and small artery elasticity in obese adults on a weight loss diet.

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  • 1School of Medicine and Pharmacology, Computing and Mathematics, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, Australia.


Increased arterial stiffness is associated with enhanced risk of cardiovascular disease in obese individuals. Whether n3 fatty acid ethyl ester (FAEE) supplementation improves arterial stiffness in obese participants on a weight loss diet has not yet been investigated. The objective of the study was to carry out a 12-wk randomized, single-blind trial to test the effect of a 25% energy deficit weight loss diet alone (WL) (n = 12) or WL plus 4 g/d Omacor (46% EPA and 38% DHA) supplementation (WL+FAEE) (n = 13) on arterial elasticity in obese adults. Large (C1) and small artery elasticity (C2) were measured by pulse contour analysis of the radial artery. WL alone reduced (P < 0.05 in all) body weight (-3%), waist circumference (-4%), systolic (-3%) and diastolic (-3%) blood pressures, cardiac output (-4%), plasma TG concentration (-25%), and the homeostasis model assessment (HOMA) score (-12%) and increased plasma HDL cholesterol (+9%) and adiponectin (+18%) concentrations. However, WL alone did not alter C1 and C2. The WL+FAEE intervention significantly reduced body weight (-4%), waist circumference (-4%), systolic (-8%) and diastolic (-5%) blood pressures, pulse pressure (-5%), heart rate (-8%), plasma TG concentration (-36%), and HOMA score (-12%) and increased stroke volume (+3%), plasma HDL cholesterol (+6%) and adiponectin concentrations (+28%), and C1 (+20%) and C2 (+22%) artery elasticity. The changes in systolic blood pressure, heart rate, plasma TGs, C1, and C2 were significantly greater in the WL+FAEE group than in the WL group. Supplementation with n3 FAEEs improves C1 and C2 independently of weight loss in obese adults.

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