Research Shows Fish Oil Doesn’t Prevent Cancer

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What is the connection between fish oil and cancer?

Current research shows they may lower the risk for certain cancers, but may not actually prevent cancer.

This article will look at what particular data the researchers reviewed to reach their conclusions.

Fish oils are an excellent source of the omega 3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).

And numerous studies cited by the National Institutes of Health show that these healthy fats have anti-inflammatory effects which can reduce your risk for heart disease and other health conditions.

But when it comes to using fish oil for preventing cancer, the data appears to show that it may not be as effective….

U.S. Dept. of Health Tackles the Fish Oil Cancer Debate

woman scientist in white lab coat with doing fish oil cancer research

A group of scientists at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (a division of the U.S. Department of Health) conducted a study on the effects of omega 3 fatty acids on cancer, tumor growth and cancer treatments.

The researchers looked at over 4834 studies and the overall chances of developing certain cancers:

  • Breast Cancer – they found one (1) study that showed an increased risk for cancer and three (3) studies that reported EPA and DHA decreased the risk for breast cancer.

  • Colon Cancer – one (1) study showed that fish oils greatly reduced the risk for colon cancer and 17 studies showed no effect at all.

  • Lung Cancer – one (1) study showed an increased risk for lung cancer and another revealed a decreased risk for lung cancer. Four other lung cancer studies had insignificant results.

  • Prostate Cancer – one (1) single study showed an increased risk for prostate cancer and another study resulted in a decreased risk for prostate cancer. An additional fifteen (15) studies showed no link between fish oils and an increased risk for prostate cancer.

Researchers concluded:

“A large body of literature spanning numerous cohorts from many different countries and with different demographic characteristics does not provide evidence to suggest a significant association between omega 3 fatty acids and cancer incidence. Dietary supplementation with omega 3 fatty acids is unlikely to prevent cancer.”

While fish oils provide an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids, scientists believe they have won’t increase or decrease your risk for cancer and they appear to have no effect on the immune system.


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