ST. PAUL, Minn., Aug. 29 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists say omega-3 fatty acids might prevent more sudden deaths than defibrillators in homes and public places or even implanted defibrillators.
Researchers at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, Minn., compared such preventive strategies in a computer-simulated community of 100,000 people that resembled the population of Olmsted County, Minn., in 2000.
By raising omega-3 fatty acids levels among the cyber-Olmsted citizens, Dr. Thomas Kottke and colleagues were able to lower overall death rates in the simulated population by 6.4 percent.
By contrast, automated external defibrillators, or AEDs, reduced death rates by 0.8 percent, and implanted defibrillators, ICDs, reduced deaths by 3.3 percent.
People can raise their omega-3 levels by eating fish or taking supplements.
Kottle said the research suggests raising omega-3 fatty acids "would have about eight times the impact of distributing AEDs and two times the impact of implanting ICDs."
Gary Moller comments:
What continues to amaze me is how little traction these studies have on prescribing practices.
It was not that long ago that we considered food to be a rather passive contributor to health (Not sure if this is the best way to describe this, but it'll have to do). We now know that certain foods or food derivatives have powerful preventive and therapeutic effects.
So, for example, if a person has elevated risk of a heart attack or stroke, it makes sense to deliberately boost their intake of healthy oils that we know have important protective effects on the heart muscle and the circulation. (Of course, we would do a few other preventive measures as well).
Example: reducing risk of a blood clot; if, as the evidence is crying out, the omega oils have powerful stabilising effects on the blood, why would anyone ever want to prescribe an expensive and toxic medication that is based on rat poison?
Is it because, like vitamin D (derived from sunlight), these oils are cheap and freely available?
To me the choice for prevention is a no-brainer - who would ever want to cart around a bulky electronic defribulator!