Eating Fish Once a Week Reduces Risk of MS

Including essential fatty acids from fish in your diet has a myriad of health benefits. According to a new study, lower risk of multiple sclerosis should be added to the lengthy list.

In the United States alone, over 400,000 people are living with this incurable disease. Multiple sclerosis is a disabling nervous system disease that affects primarily adults aged from 20 to 40, and has a range of symptoms, affecting both physical and mental health. Although we still don’t know what causes multiple sclerosis, scientists claim that there are practices that could lower your chances of developing this neurological condition. In a recent study, a team of researchers revealed omega-3 as one of the critical factors.

The study analyzed dietary habits of 1,153 participants, half of which have been diagnosed with MS or clinically isolated syndrome, to determine if their intake of omega-3 could have had any influence on the development of the disease. Their findings indicate that high fish intake was associated with a 45 percent lower risk of developing multiple sclerosis: high intake was considered if people ate fish once a week, or one to three times a month but took daily fish oil supplements.

However, there’s still need for further research that would confirm the team’s findings. Although the effect of regular omega-3 intake could promote higher resistance to MS, it would seem that genetics have an important role, as well. The genetic variations in a human gene cluster responsible for regulation of fatty acids might give an advantage to certain people.

Although the research is not definitive, it can’t hurt to up your intake of fish if you haven’t been eating enough of it. Even if it turns out that it doesn’t have a significant impact on the development of multiple sclerosis, omega-3 acids are crucial for optimal health.

Photo credit: Ekaterina Kondratova/Shutterstock

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