Fish a Good Choice for Women with Ovarian Syndrome
Omega-3 fats may have a positive impact on hormone levels and cardiac risk in women with polycystic ovary syndrome
Imbalanced hormone levels, in which a woman's testosterone is too high and her estrogen too low, are the mark of a condition known as polycystic ovary syndrome, which carries an increased heart disease risk among other complications. Omega-3 fats from fish are widely accepted as heart-healthy, and a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition indicates that omega-3 fats may also have a positive impact on hormone levels and cardiac risk in women with polycystic ovary syndrome.
Omega-3 fats pass three tests
The researchers conducted three experiments to examine how omega-3 fats from fish affect women with polycystic ovary syndrome.
The three experiments led to the following findings:
Finding the balance
"Findings from our three experiments show that a balance between omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids that favors omega-3 can have a positive impact on hormone and lipid levels in women with polycystic ovary syndrome," said study co-author Dr. James Gibney at the Adelaide and Meath Hospital in Dublin, Ireland. "A diet that emphasizes omega-3 fats is likely to be particularly healthy."
In addition to adding a fish oil supplement, women with polycystic ovary syndrome might benefit from taking these dietary measures:
(Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:652-62)
Maureen Williams, ND, received her bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania and her Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University in Seattle, WA. She has a private practice on Cortes Island in British Columbia, Canada, and has done extensive work with traditional herbal medicine in Guatemala and Honduras. Dr. Williams is a regular contributor to Healthnotes Newswire.