If your patients want lasting vision, tell them to eat more fish and nuts as the omega-3 fatty acids in these foods may protect them against two leading causes of human blindness, a new study has found.
The results showed omega-3s help regulate blood vessel growth in our eyes. That means the fatty acids could help prevent eye diseases such as retinopathy, caused by an overgrowth of leaky blood vessels in the eyes, and age-related macular degeneration, caused by abnormal growth of blood vessels, said study researcher Dr. Lois Smith, an ophthalmologist at Children’s Hospital Boston.
The fatty acids also “activated proteins that improve insulin sensitivity,” Dr. Smith said. “Those proteins are the same ones targeted by type 2 diabetes drugs such as Avandia, so the finding shows that fatty acids could be used to improve insulin sensitivity in people with diabetes.”
“Although more clinical studies need to be done, it appears possible that similar to mice, patients would have improved insulin sensitivity with omega-3 fatty acids, with no increased risk of heart disease,” Dr. Smith told MyHealthNewsDaily.
Although more clinical studies need to be done, it appears possible that similar to mice, patients would have improved insulin sensitivity with omega-3 fatty acids, with no increased risk of heart disease
To get the same beneficial health effects as the mice in the study, humans would have to consume 2 grams a day of omega-3 compounds docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EHA), either as a supplement or in food.
The study was published in the February issue of Science Translational Medicine.