More Evidence Fish Oil Builds Bone Density

Although I've written about the link between building healthy bones and the necessary balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fats in the body before, it's certainly very much worth repeating. Especially since this new study links that crucial balance to adding bone density, crucial to patients suffering from osteoporosis.

Scientists surveyed some 1,500 older men and women living in Southern California about their daily diets and measured their bone mineral density (BMD). They found greater disparities in the intake of foods containing omega-3 and omega-6 fats were responsible for lower BMD in the hip bones of older men and in women whether or not they took hormone therapy (HT). Moreover, omega-3/omega-6 ratios were inversely associated with BMD at the hip bones of women whether they took HT or not.

As you probably guessed, HT was a significant factor in this study, according to researchers. Better ratios could spur the effect of HT on bones by increasing the absorption of calcium. (Fact is, you don't need to take supplements at all folks, if you're eating according to your body's unique nutritional type.) Their final recommendations probably sound very simple and familiar if you read my blog regularly:

  • Increase your intake of omega-3 rich foods.
  • Lower your consumption of omega-6 fatty acids.

As I've said more times than I can remember, the best and easiest way to normalize your ratio of omega-3/omega-6 fats is by taking a high quality fish or cod liver oil. Don't think of it as a supplement to your daily diet. It's an essential food your body needs every day.

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, April 2005, Vol. 81, No. 4: 934-938

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