Media Hype Takes a Shot at Fish Oil

A study published earlier this week linking fish oil to prostate cancer has triggered a minor frenzy in the news media. In recent years, fish oil has been the proverbial “golden boy” of the supplement world, winning bout after bout and racking up benefits related to conditions from depression to heavyweights like cardiovascular disease. No surprise then that the moment a contender threatens the crown, the media is all over the opportunity to smear this truly valuable dietary component.

The study examined associations between blood omega-3 fatty acid levels and risk of prostate cancer in men. Men with higher blood levels of omega-3’s had a 71% higher risk of aggressive prostate cancer than men with lower blood levels. Study authors conclude that findings suggest that these blood fats are likely involved in prostate tumor development.

I know of no other single study for which the drawn conclusions have been more wrongly stretched, strengthened and extrapolated than this one. Media outlets twisted the result to mean that supplementing with fish oil and even eating fish could cause prostate cancer!

There are two pieces to the problem here.  Continue reading “Media Hype Takes a Shot at Fish Oil”

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