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The Professionals behind www.CholesterolCholestrol.com

Donald Urquhart,(BA & DipAppPsy), Fully Registered Psychologist. A past cholesterol sufferer.

Dr James Hogg, (BSc Oxon, MBBS & BA Hons), Medical Doctor, experienced and trained. A great addition to www.CholesterolCholestrol.com
Michael T. Sapko, M.D., Ph.D.,Trained as a Doctor, but preferred writing more. Excellent that he chose to write for www.CholesterolCholestrol.com too!
Loni Ice, (CphT), Certified Pharmacy Technician - the one behind the counter you ask for help from with your cholesterol medication and drugs. Strong interest in healing herbs.
Chris Urquhart, Student, studying for a social work degree. Has a passion for medical and veterinarian history and provides back up support. Not yet qualified to write for CholesterolCholestrol.com, but very useful indeed.
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Fish Oil Cholesterol - Is fish oil good for lowering high cholesterol?

Contents:  Is there such a thing as fish oil cholesterol? -- Does fish oil lower cholesterol? -- Does fish oil protect against cholesterol build up on artery walls and the resultant heart attacks and strokes?  -- Does fish oil lower triglycerides? -- Heres how fish oil may be able to benefit your cardiovascular system, especially if you lower LDL cholesterol as well -- Summary of fish oil cholesterol

 

How much Cholesterol in fish oil?

Fish oil does contain cholesterol.  So, yes, fish oil cholesterol is real and does exist, but fish oil cholesterol is normally only a quite small amount in a fish oil capsule, about 0 to 1mg cholesterol per 1000mg fish oil capsule.

 

Does fish oil benefit the lowering of cholesterol?

The use of fish oil to lower cholesterol is a contentious subject. Some research supports the opinion that omega 3 enriched fish oil lowers cholesterol, but there are also other research reports that fail to find any improvement in cholesterol as a result of taking fish oil.

If you take omega 3 enriched fish oil daily, hdl good cholesterol improves 1-3%, which means heart attack risk is reduced by about 3 to 9%. BUT ldl bad cholesterol increases by 5-10%, which can raise your risk of heart attack 10 to 20%. So fish oil does NOT appear to be a viable treatment option for high cholesterol.

Some of the information above is based on cholesterol guidelines and cholesterol research from both AMA and AHA.

However, a recent study by  Dr. C Anderson, MD, at the George Institute for International Health at the University of Sydney in Australia, circa 2007, found that fish oil failed to lower cholesterol and failed to protect against heart disease.  "The supplements didn't work."

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Fish oil, heart attack, heart disease and heart health

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are claims that fish oil lowers the risk of death, heart attack, abnormal heart rhythms, and strokes in people with known cardiovascular disease.  They also state that fish oil slows hardening of the arteries and lowers blood pressure slightly by 2-5 mmHg.

What I have found is that the research into fish oil for heart health, disease and so on, is very much in it's infancy. One study may find a benefit to fish oil capsules, while another finds no benefit, or even that fish oil hurts your cardiovascular system.

To give one example, the CSIRO, a respected and highly valued government research department in Australia, proved conclusively that omega-3 fatty acids - as found in fish and fish oil, protects against heart rhythm disorders - that was in 2005. In 2006, another valued research report is published in the AMA, proving that omega 3 enriched fish oils do NOT lower the occurence of serious abnormal heart rhythms, nor the risk of death due to them.

So we have two conclusive fish oil studies that contradict each other! Obviously more fish oil and heart research has to be done to find out more.

 

Fish oil and Triglycerides

Fish oil rich in omega 3 has been found to be extremely suitable to lowering blood triglycerides.

The American Heart Association, 2003, recommends supplementation with 2000-4000mg of EPA + DHA daily can reduce triglycerides by 20-40%. Because of there is a risk of bleeding caused from omega-3 fatty acids when supplementation exceeds 3000mgs daily, see your doctor before starting.

Fish oil supplements, rich in Omega 3's EPA + DHA, can lower blood triglyceride levels with doses as low as 2000mgs daily. The more fish oil consumed, the better the fish oil effect at lowering triglycerides. 4000mgs fish oil per day can reduce blood triglyceride levels between 25 and 40%.

 

Heres how fish oil may be able to benefit your cardiovascular system, especially if you lower LDL cholesterol as well.

Dr. Miller circa 2007 conducted a study on 4,000 patients who had suffered heart attack or serious heart problems.  Although he wasn't looking at fish oil, he was looking at the relationship between triglyceride level and LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol).  He found that if you had low triglycerides and low LDL, then your risk of heart attack was about 25 to 30 less than if you just had low LDL.

The low LDL had been achieved via the use of statin drugs mainly, but lowering LDL through diet should be of equal value.

So, although fish oil may not directly help with cholesterol based heart disease, fish oil may help reduce the risk if you reduce LDL cholesterol as well to low levels.

Targets to aim for LDL below 130 and triglycerides below 150.

Don't want to take fish oil capsules to get the benefit of reduced cardiovascular events?  Then eat fruits, vegetables, fish and so on and you may be able to reduce your triglycerides by as much as 50%.

 

Fish oil, cholesterol and heart health: in Conclusion

AS the research is continuing and expanding, the medical guidelines will possibly alter, perhaps quickly. Therefore it appears prudent to consult with your doctor about the use of fish oil as a treatment for high cholesterol, high triglycerides, heart disease, heart attack and heart health.

 





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