Skip to comments.Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation Not Associated With Lower Risk of Major Cardiovascular Disease...
Posted on 09/17/2012 10:37:49 PM PDT by neverdem
Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation Not Associated With Lower Risk of Major Cardiovascular Disease Events
In a study that included nearly 70,000 patients, supplementation with omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids was not associated with a lower risk of all-cause death, cardiac death, sudden death, heart attack, or stroke, according to an analysis of previous studies published in the Sept. 12 issue of JAMA.
"Treatment with marine-derived omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) for the prevention of major cardiovascular adverse outcomes has been supported by a number of randomized clinical trials (RCTs) and refuted by others. Although their mechanism of action is not clear, their postulated effect on cardiovascular outcomes may be due to their ability to lower triglyceride levels, prevent serious arrhythmias, or even decrease platelet aggregation and lower blood pressure. Current guidelines issued by major societies recommend their use, either as supplements or through dietary counseling, for patients after myocardial infarction [MI; heart attack], whereas the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved their administration only as triglyceride-lowering agents in patients with overt hypertriglyceridemia, and some (but not all) European national regulatory agencies have approved the omega-3 administration for cardiovascular risk modification. The controversy stemming from the varying labeling indications causes confusion in everyday clinical practice about whether to use these agents for cardiovascular protection," according to background information in the article.
Evangelos C. Rizos, M.D., Ph.D., of the University Hospital of Ioannina, Ioannina, Greece, and colleagues performed a large-scale synthesis of the available randomized evidence by conducting a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the association between omega-3 PUFAs and major cardiovascular outcomes.
Of the 3,635 citations retrieved, 20 studies with 68,680 randomized patients were included, reporting 7,044 deaths, 3,993 cardiac deaths, 1,150 sudden deaths, 1,837 heart attacks, and 1,490 strokes. Analysis indicated no statistically significant association with all-cause mortality, cardiac...
(Excerpt) Read more at sciencedaily.com ...
Only real wild Salmon will do, but that will soon be banned /S
I guess the science wasn’t settled.
This kind of summary of various studies illustrates what is wrong with nutritional medicine in the hands of convention doctors and researchers. Our whole medical orientation is toward curing diseases, preferably with drugs. The idea of preventing disease through the use of vital nutrients, diet, exercise, and stress reduction is alien to the PharmoMedicoIndustrial Complex, and worst of all it costs a whole lot less.
All these so called nutrition studies try varying one nutrient like you would with a drug. What is need is studies using combinations of nutrients and diet that should reasonably target prevention of certain conditions. Dr. Atkins has written a number of books on this approach. Currently I am reading “Dr. Atkins’ Health Revolution: How Complementary Medicine Can Extend Your Life.” What he means by Complementary Medicine means preventive type nutriional medicine in combination with conventional medical treatment where that is warranted. Omega 3 and Omega 6 have been useful in combination with other health enhancing nutrients in successfully treating a number of conditions. Also the bottles say to take one 1 gram capsule once or twice a day. Atkins often used 8 or 9 grams a day. Comparing various studies, you no doubt have people taking different doses in different studies.
Personally, I became interested in nutritional health intervention when I was in my early 30’s. Now 40 years later I am in excellent health, look 15 or 20 years younger, never had the severe health problems that plagued my mother. They were starting, but that is when I discovered nutritional medicine. Only you can do what is really needed to maintain optimum health. The doctors are only interested when you start getting sick.
Right, it’s like the chocolate industry doing a study on how good chocolate is for you.
I think omega-3 is supposed to be good for anti inflammation.
As one with heart disease its really genetics that's the problem. If you eat well and exercise and have bad genes your
screwed. If you eat junk and don't exercise and have good genes you should be ok.
It’s a freaking meta study. He looked over a whole bunch of other studies and extrapolated. Some of them were bloody questionnaires.
Well, what was the QUALITY of the fish oil supplement these people were taking.? There is a world of difference between actual clean waters pure fish oils like Nordic naturals brand, very pure but pricy, and chinese made pills found at your local Walgreen’s that might not have anything valuable in them. There was no standard.
Nobodys getting my Carsons oil away from me. Awsome stuff. Studies be damn
Right, nutrients are good for a variety of things, not just cardiac, etc. Heal one part of the body and you will heal many.
I am not giving up my Nature Made. I don’t care if it is the placebo effect or what. Since I have been taking my multis and a fish oil tab daily, my work output has increased, I exercise better and I feel better.
And I am a guy who smokes daily, drinks (once or twice a month) and works out at a gym two to four times a week (schedule permitting).
Nature Made may not be top of the line, but it’s good solid stuff.
Have you noticed that since progressives dominated academia, almost everything experts told us about food has been wrong?
Krill oil for the win.
Re: your tag line
I’d switch them tho....LOL
Now, watch Limbaugh jump on this and tell the world, "We don't need stinkin' vitamins" and the drones here on FR will dump theirs down the drain...
...performed a large-scale synthesis of the available randomized evidence by conducting a systematic review and meta-analysis...
What that means is that patients were randomly picked to be in one group or the other; i.e., control groups were built in. The meta-analysis part means that the researchers used some pretty heavy-duty statistics to compile and analyze the data; these statistics can find significant differences of less than a percent between different categories. (That doesn't mean the differences mean anything; just that they have been uncovered.) (The word "significant" refers to the reliability of the statistical findings, not to the subject of the research.)
My reading of this article suggests to me that the various original studies were undertaken to determine the effect of Omega-3 on triglyceride levels, not on cardiovascular disease. The assumption is that because cardiovascular disease and triglyceride levels are associated with each other, that the triglyceride levels drive cardiovascular disease progression. Such assumptions are not valid, but many physicians (who are rarely trained as researchers) who enter into research don't grasp the idea that correlation =/= causation. This meta-study actually used the data from those studies to look at cardiovascular outcomes, which is not what those studies were designed to look at (although the data was apparently recorded anyway).
I guess no one had looked at cardio outcomes before, because they had *all* made the mistaken correlation=causation assumption.
Anyway, sorry for being so long, but analysis of scientific topics can rarely be summed up in a couple of concise sentences.
“Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation Not Associated With Lower Risk of Major Cardiovascular Disease...”
Sounds like the patent ran out. What’s next?
Thank you. I have but a rudimentary understanding of stats and studies (obviously) from my intro classes in college. The tedious process of studies drives me to boredom and I personally believe that stats in many cases are worthless (as you can’t negate all biasses from them).
I figured there was some slight-of-hand used in this “study”.
I take the Carsons Oil pills myself. I’m going to do so until they quit making it.
The headline could just as easily read, Prescription Statin Drugs Not Associated With Lower Risk of Major Cardiovascular Disease...
So I guess this means the studies behind FDA approved Lovaza were just wrong?
Will Lovaza get the hook now?
About half of the 70,000 total got omega 3 supplements. One of the things I like about press releases found at ScienceDaily is that they usually link the abstract. Here's part of it:
Data Extraction Descriptive and quantitative information was extracted; absolute and relative risk (RR) estimates were synthesized under a random-effects model. Heterogeneity was assessed using the Q statistic and I2. Subgroup analyses were performed for the presence of blinding, the prevention settings, and patients with implantable cardioverter-defibrillators, and meta-regression analyses were performed for the omega-3 dose. A statistical significance threshold of .0063 was assumed after adjustment for multiple comparisons.First, it's a Meta-analysis, so caveat emptor. They picked 20 studies out of 3,635 citations . Were they cherry picked? The usual level of statistical significance is that you would expect the results to happen by chance five times or less out of one hundred. I have no idea why they went for 63 times out of 10,000.
It was nothing of the sort. This study was of Omega-3s that are processed in standardized forms by pharmaceutical companies and prescribed as drugs. That is different from "natural" Omega-3s, since (by law) any pills made by pharmaceutical companies have to undergo stringent quality control testing, to include ensuring that a pill containing 5 units of active ingredient actually contains 5 units.
These standardized pills are not comparable to the supplements that you might buy at the store, which undergo very little quality testing, and may not contain anything close to the amount of active ingredient as stated on the label.
Personally, I avoid taking any pills--whether pharmaceuticals manufactured according to strict quality standards, or "natural" supplements purchased in a store--unless I absolutely must. My training in biochemistry tells me that ingesting these active ingredients puts stress on the body's detoxification systems, stress I'd rather avoid unless necessary.
It could be that only those studies contained the data they were specifically analyzing, and met certain inclusion criteria. The number of methodologically flawed studies is truly astounding. No offense, but I have found that most physicians who venture into the realm of research have no clue how to properly design a study, or how to interpret the results.
The reported P value doesn't concern me; it was probably the exact P value that they calculated. I've calculated extremely low P values (where P < 0.0001), but reported them as P < 0.05, because that's the standard acceptable level of significance.
Good point about obscuring medication. When people go to Dr. Atkin’s clinic, they first try to wean the client off as much medication as possible. He even mentions that there are certain medications that really interfere with the nutrients needed for the problem being addressed.
Incidentally, anyone who really wants to rev up their condition and loose weight without a lot of painful hunger should Googe the Atkins Induction Diet, and then the 3 follow-up diets for long term maintenance. If you have a medical condition, you could ask the doctor to supervise your health as you try this, but you probably will get a lot of pooh pooh comments from the medical profession. If you do have a medical condition you will want to research this very carefully. There are several Atkins books available giving a lot of detail on treatment of individuals and success with very low carb diets, especially for diabetes. He also recommends using an array of vitamins and minerals. You really have to study this if you want to help yourself when your doctor is not willing to.