Omega-3 intake 'linked to lower risk of bowel cancer death'

22 July 2016

A high dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids could help to lower the risk of death from bowel cancer among patients who have already been diagnosed with the disease.

This is according to a new study published in the medical journal Gut, which could indicate that people with confirmed bowel cancer could help to prolong their survival simply by increasing their oily fish intake.

Two large long-term studies were analysed for this research: the Nurses' Health Study of 121,700 US registered female nurses and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study of 51,529 male health professionals.

Among 1,659 participants who developed bowel cancer, 561 died. Of those who had been diagnosed with bowel cancer, people whose diets contained higher levels of marine omega-3 did not see an overall lower risk of death, but were less likely to die from their bowel cancer.

Higher doses were associated with a lower risk, with those who consumed at least 0.3 g daily after their diagnosis having a 41 per cent lower risk of dying from their disease than people who consumed less than 0.1 g of omega-3.

The researchers concluded: "If replicated by other studies, our results support the clinical recommendation of increasing marine omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids among patients with bowel cancer."

Posted by Philip Briggs


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