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Omega-3 Fish Oil Helps to Reduce Cancer Complications

“Cancer”, a complicated word and disease. You may be surprised to hear, you can reduce the cancer complications.

Yes, it’s true, you can  reduce cancer complications taking supplement ‘omega-3 fish oil’.

You can count Omega-3 Fish oil as one of the best vitamin supplements whose benefits are abundant.

Omega-3 fish oil can benefit you in numerious ways, but here we will be talking abount reduction of cancer complications as it’s benefits. If you want to know all other benefits of Omega-3 Fish Oil, please check this page => “Benefits of Omega-3 Fish Oil”.

Omega-3 Fish oil helps in the prevention of cancer diseases

Some studies suggest that omega-3s may prevent or slow cancer development by reducing inflammation, slowing cancer cell growth and division, and stopping cancer cells from producing new blood vessels.

Omega-3 helps in prevention of Cancer Disease
Omega-3 helps in prevention of Cancer Disease

Omega-3 fatty acids are considered immunonutrients and are commonly used in the nutritional therapy of cancer patients due to their ample biological effects.

How does it work

Omega-3 plays essential roles in cell signaling and in the cell structure and fluidity of membranes.

They participate in the resolution of inflammation and have anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive effects.

Additionally, they can act as agonists of G protein-coupled receptors, namely, GPR40/FFA1 and GPR120/FFA4. Cancer patients undergo complications, such as anorexia-cachexia syndrome, pain, depression, and paraneoplastic syndromes.

Omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil help to reduce depression, and anxiety ultimately reducing pain and fear caused due to complications.

Some Studies

Interestingly, the 2017 European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) guidelines for cancer patients only discuss the use of omega-3 for cancer-cachexia treatment, leaving aside other cancer-related complications that could potentially be managed by omega-3 supplementation.

This critical review aimed to discuss the effects and the possible underlying mechanisms of omega-3 supplementation in cancer-related complications.

What does the study summarize?

Data compilation in this critical review indicates that further investigation is still required to assess the factual benefits of omega-3 supplementation in cancer-associated illnesses.

Nevertheless, preclinical evidence reveals that omega-3 and their metabolites might modulate pivotal pathways underlying complications secondary to cancer, indicating that this is a promising field of knowledge to be explored.

Bang and Dyerberg Research and Investigation

Bang and Dyerberg investigated the Greenland Eskimo diet in the 1970s in order to determine the reason for why this population had a low prevalence of cardiovascular diseases.

The Eskimo diet was composed of seal and whale blubber, containing high protein and low carbohydrate levels, as well as the same amount of fat when compared to the regular Danish diet.

The leading cause of the low prevalence of cardiovascular diseases has been attributed to the high dietary content of omega-3 fatty acids.

Omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil are classified as essential because they cannot be synthesized by the organism; hence, the consumption of food rich in omega-3, such as fish from cold waters, nuts, and seed oils, is mandatory.

The beneficial effects of omega-3 consumption are likely related to its anti-inflammatory and pro-resolution effects, mainly due to the inhibition of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) and the production of pro-resolution mediators, such as resolvins, protectins, and maresins.

More recently, two G protein-coupled receptors, called Free Fatty Acid Receptor 1 (FFA1) and Free Fatty Acid Receptor 4 (FFA4), were identified as molecular targets for omega-3.

When activated, these receptors can promote a number of effects, such as improving insulin sensibility, inducing adipose tissue browning, promoting analgesia by the release of β-endorphin, controlling energy homeostasis, and diminishing food intake.


According to GLOBOCAN 2018, a project of the International Agency for Research on Cancer, 18.1 million new cases of cancer and 9.6 million cancer-related deaths worldwide were estimated for the year 2018.

Every year, 8.5 million people die from cancer. Lung cancer is the most diagnosed type of cancer for both sexes and the leading cause of death.

In males, lung cancer is also the most common and the first cause of death, followed by prostate and colorectal cancers. Among women, breast cancer is the leading type of cancer and the main cause of death, followed by colorectal and lung cancers 

When to avoid omega-3 fatty acids

The American Cancer Society recommends avoiding omega-3 fatty acid supplements in the following situations:

  • If you take anticoagulant medications or aspirin, omega-3 fatty acid supplements may increase the risk of excessive bleeding.
  • If you have elevated cholesterol levels, omega-3 fatty acid supplements may continue to increase your cholesterol levels.
  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Women should talk to their doctors before taking omega-3 supplements or any dietary supplements.
  • If you are menstruating, omega-3 fatty acid supplements may increase the tendency of developing anemia.

Source: National Library of Medicine, USA