What effect do fish and fish oil have on blood pressure?

If you suffer from high blood pressure, you may benefit from eating more fish or taking fish oil supplements. Numerous studies demonstrate a link between increased consumption of omega-3 fatty acids and a reduction in blood pressure. There is also a clear indication these essential fatty acids help to prevent atherosclerosis and to lower triglyceride levels-where fat is stored in the blood. These effects are found to be dose-dependent but may not be observed in people with normal blood pressure.

However, there is a maximum impact fish oil supplementation may have on dropping blood pressure and to aid its effect, dietary adjustments should accompany supplementation. A study conducted in Australia with patients who combined fish oil and a diet with restrictions on caloric intake showed encouraging results. Blood pressure dropped, triglyceride levels lowered by 38 percent and good cholesterol (HDL) rose by 24 percent.

In a study conducted at the University of Oslo heart transplants patients were administered fish oil. Hypertension can be a complication of heart transplants and the results of this one study suggest it was an effective preventative measure.

Be aware that omega-3 fatty acids can also act to help thin the blood and if you are taking any blood thinning medications, you should not use fish oil supplementation.

Continue Learning about Dietary Supplements

Dietary Supplements

Whether you're visiting the drug store, grocery or natural food shop you'll likely find an aisle where there are jars and bottles of things for you to put in your body that are neither foods nor medicines. Ranging from vitamins an...

d minerals to fiber and herbal remedies, these supplements are not regulated in the same way as either food or medicine. Some of them are backed by solid research, others are folk remedies or proprietary cures. If your diet does not include enough of certain vitamins or minerals, a supplement may be a good idea. Natural treatment for conditions like constipation may be effective. But because these substances are unregulated, it is always a good idea to educate yourself about the products and to use common sense when taking them. This is even more true if you are pregnant or taking a medicine that may be affected by supplements.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.