Only aspirin has a higher number of clinical studies focusing on its powers. There are in excess of 20,000 research papers on Omega 3 EFAs (DHA and EPA alone or in combination) on Pubmed, the respository of clinical research. In a 12-month span between May 2012 and May 2013, there were more than 150 human clinical trials involving Omega 3 EFAs, covering a vast range of health conditions. Of the scores of research into the powers of Omega 3 EFAs, researchers found these to be viable to support brain health, vision health, cardiovascular health, skin health, promote healthy inflammation response, promote healthy skin and promote healthy stress response and immunity, and to even boost children’s IQ scores and temperament. There are also serious investigations in how EPAs work against several cancers.
It is widely understood that the first investigative Omega 3 EFA research was published in 1971 — “Plasma lipid and lipoprotein pattern in Greenlandic west-coast eskimos” (Bang, Dyerberg and Nielsen), in the Lancet (1: 1143, 1971). The authors found a crucial link to the high-fish-fat diet (and the DHA and EPA) and this population’s very low incidence of death from cardiovascular disease.
Most recently, in the November 5 2013 edition of the Journal of Psychopharmacology, authors Bellino et al investigated the role of Omega 3 EFAs with valproic acid in the treatment of borderline personality disorder. The authors write “Omega-3 fatty acids have received increasing interest due to their effects in stabilizing plasmatic membranes and regulating cell signaling. The efficacy of omega-3 fatty acids in psychiatric disorders, in particular mood disorders, has been studied.”
Omega 3 EFAs have, therefore, been literally studied in almost everything from the heart to the mind — and also recently, the connection from the mind to the heart: A study appearing in May 2013 in the American Journal of Physiology concluded that fish oils may be helpful in counteracting the effects of mental stress on the cardiovascular system. After several weeks of taking EPA and DHA, there was a decreased response to mental stress, including heart rate and sympathetic nerve activity.