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Natural Awakenings Healthy Living Magazine

Eat Oily Fish to Live Longer

Bottle of omega 3 supplements next to food sources


Omega-3 fatty acids have previously been linked to better heart, brain, eye and joint health, and a new large-scale analysis published in Nature Communications suggests that omega-3s from oily fish may also extend lifespan. Researchers reviewed pooled data from 17 studies of 42,466 people that were followed an average of 16 years. Those that had the highest amount of fish-based omega-3s in their blood—at the 90th percentile—had a 13 percent lower risk for death than people with omega-3 levels in the 10th percentile. The risk of dying from cardiovascular disease was 15 percent lower and from cancer 11 percent lower. The blood levels of alpha-linolenic acid omega-3s obtained from plant-based sources like nuts and flaxseed did not show a conclusive link to lower mortality.