Supplements in the News
|Omega-3s Improve Insulin Sensitivity|
|Published Wednesday, September 3, 2008|
PHOENIX—A study conducted by a team from Kronos Longevity Research Institute (KLRI) found a diet high in omega-3 fat improves insulin sensitivity and reduces inflammatory markers, but does not alter endocrine responsiveness in older adults (Horm Metab Res. 2008;40:199-205) (DOI: 10:1055/s-2008-1046759). KLRI recruited six men and six women over age 60 for the study; they consumed an isocaloric control diet for six weeks, followed by an eight-week intervention diet that included 720 g/week fatty fish plus 15 ml/d sardine oil.
“It is possible to achieve significant changes in the fat molecules in cell membranes after relatively short periods of changes in one’s diet,” said Panayiotis D. Tsitouras, M.D., clinical director at KLRI and the primary researcher on the trial. “We wanted to see if we could improve mental function, hormone levels at rest and/or under stress, and immune function, toward a pattern more like that of younger individuals.”
After the intervention, results showed consuming the diet high in omega-3s significantly improved insulin sensitivity, reduced triglycerides in women and reduced free fatty acids in men. Serum C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation, was also reduced with a high omega-3 diet. No changes were found in metabolic parameters or hormone responses.
“We concluded that a diet high in omega-3 increases insulin sensitivity and reduces inflammatory markers,” Harman said. “However, it did not alter endocrine responsiveness after eight weeks.”
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