Health Advice



Oh my, omega

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

"Omega Man" (1971), "Omega" (2012) and "Alpha and Omega" (2010, plus seven sequels) are proof that the movie world thinks omegas make for a healthy box office. A lot of you think odd-numbered omegas -- especially DHA omega-3s -- make for a healthier you, too.

But a new study may be confusing you about the benefits of a daily omega-3 supplement. The study in PLOS Genetics found that, depending on your genetic makeup, taking fish oil supplements of DHA (or EPA) can lower or raise your triglyceride level, making the supplements heart-healthy for some folks and heart-risky for others.

So where does that leave you, since you have no idea if you're in the "my genes make 'em do good" or "my genes make 'em do bad" group?

First, understand that independent of their impact on your triglyceride levels, DHA omega-3s lower body-wide inflammation and reduce risks for diabetes, obesity, some cancers, depression and cognitive problems. That's a significant boost to your long-term health.

Second, get your triglycerides level checked. Then start taking a supplement (say 1,000 mg DHA a day). Recheck your level in 45 days to see if your triglycerides went up. If they did, stop taking the supplement. If they went down, ask your doctor about continuing.

Third, you can get a big dose of omega-3s from eating salmon, sea trout, sardines, herring and anchovies. The American Heart Association recommends two servings per week to reduce the risk of congestive heart failure, coronary heart disease, stroke and sudden cardiac death. Nothing fishy about that.



Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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