Low Omega-3 Fatty Acid Levels Linked to Dementia

Low plasma N-3 fatty acids and dementia in older persons: the InCHIANTI study," Cherubini A, Andres-Lacueva C, et al, J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci, 2007; 62(10): 1120-6.

In a study involving 939 older subjects, low omega-3 fatty acid levels were found to be associated with dementia. The study population was divided into 3 groups: 1) subjects with normal cognitive function; 2) subjects with cognitive impairment, not dementia; 3) subjects with dementia (based on DSM-III-R criteria). As compared to subjects with normal cognitive function, those with dementia were found to have lower omega-3 fatty acid levels (2.9% vs 3.2%), particularly alpha-linolenic acid levels (0.34% vs 0.39%), even after adjusting for various confounding factors.

The authors conclude, "The possibility that higher omega-3 fatty acid intake is associated with a lower risk of cognitive impairment should be further investigated in prospective studies."

Michael's Comment: I take 5 fish oil capsules twice per day, as an optimal dose for brain health, to stop my atrial fibrillation, for cardiovascular health and other benefits. The best book on omega-3 fats is The Omega-3 Connection, by Andrew Stoll, MD, of Harvard.