Protects your heartBallBall14/Shutterstock
Some studies show that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil may help reduce several risk factors of heart disease. Fish oil is linked to lower levels of triglycerides (fats in the blood), and helps prevent or treat hardening of the arteries by slowing production of plaque or blood clots. Studies also suggest that regularly consuming foods with omega-3 fatty acids may help protect against stroke. However, new evidence from an analysis of 14 clinical trials suggests fish oil might not benefit people who already suffered a heart attack or stroke, according to Seung-Kwon Myung, M.D., a researcher of family medicine at Seoul National University in South Korea. “There is no evidence that omega-3 supplementation is effective for secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease,” Myung told CNN.com. If you don’t want to reap these fish oil benefits by taking the supplement, try these other ways to get more omega-3 rich foods into your diet.
Lowers cholesterolSyda Productions/Shutterstock
Mayo Clinic lists fish and omega-3 fatty acids (the main component of fish oil) as one of the five best foods to lower cholesterol. The omega-3s help reduce triglyceride levels (fats in the blood), which leads to higher HDL levels, or “good cholesterol.” Fish oil supplements can do the trick, or Elaine Magee, MPH, RD, and author of several nutrition books, tells WebMD that eating fatty fish like salmon or even canned tuna two to three times a week can positively impact cholesterol.