News: Can high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids be harmful?

Omega-3s, which are present in fatty fish, nuts and seeds, have been shown to boost heart health, fight depression and

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Omega-3s, which are present in fatty fish, nuts and seeds, have been shown to boost heart health, fight depression and keep inflammation at bay.

Thanks to their many health benefits, it seems everything from orange juice to eggs has been fortified with them lately. Along with the popularity of fish oil supplements, are we overdoing it?

Unfortunately, according to a new study published in the journal Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes and Essential Fatty Acids, you can have too much of a good thing when it comes to these polyunsaturated fats.

‘We are seeing the potential for negative effects at really high levels of omega-3 fatty acid consumption,” the study’s co-author, Norman Hord, said in a press release.

The researchers say excess amounts of omega-3s (the equivalent of a high dose supplement combined with four or more servings of omega-3-enriched foods per day) could alter immune function.

Hord suggests that standards need to be set for omega-3 intake. "As is all true with any nutrient, taking too much can have negative effects."

Do you take a fish oil supplement and eat foods that are fortified with omega-3s each day? Make sure to talk to your doctor about whether or not you’re overdoing it.

-Katharine Watts, associate web editor

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