Arthritis and Omega 3
About one third of the Bangladeshi adults suffer from musculoskeletal pain as per BMJ (British Medical Journal) survey. Many natural products have purported anti-inflammatory properties, and some have a long history of use for treating inflammation and the pain that is associated with musculoskeletal inflammatory conditions such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and tendinitis.
Although there is some limited evidence that a few natural products may provide modest benefits, in general, there is insufficient evidence to support the use of many of these natural products for inflammatory conditions. Omega-3 fatty acids may provide a modest benefit for symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. The evidence base on efficacy of omega-3 fatty acids for inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis consists of many randomised controlled trials and a few reviews.
A systematic review of 23 studies concluded that evidence is seen for a fairly consistent, but modest, benefit of marine omega-3s for rheumatoid arthritis on joint swelling and pain, duration of morning stiffness, pain and disease activity, and less need for anti-inflammatory drugs to control symptoms.
Where to Get Omega 3s
When possible, we should try to get some omega-3 fatty acids from foods. Aim to eat fish high in DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids two to three times a week. These include:
• Salmon (wild has more omega-3s than farmed)
• Lake trout
While eating more fatty fish is a good idea, some are likely to have higher levels of mercury, PCBs, or other toxins. These include mackerel, wild swordfish, tilefish, and shark.
Farm-raised fish of any type may also have higher levels of contaminants. Children and pregnant women should avoid these fish entirely. Everyone else should eat no more than 7 ounces of these fish a week. Fish like wild trout and wild salmon are safer. As these sea fishes are not available on a regular basis in our country like Bangladesh hence we need to depend on supplements extracted from them or Omega 3 fortified foods. Some of the renowned companies are marketing these types of products like Omega 3 supplement from pure Icelandic Salmon fish, Omega 3 enriched eggs now-a-days, which is really exciting for health conscious people here.