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Taking fish oil supplements? You might want to rethink the cost

fish oil supplements cost not effectiveHere’s one way to save a few bucks: Drop the fish oil supplements.

A recent analysis of 10 large clinical trials on the dietary supplement found that they do little to protect patients with heart disease, despite previous advice from the American Heart Association.

The supplements did not reduce the risk of heart disease deaths, nonfatal heart attacks or stroke, the analysis, published in JAMA Cardiology, determined.

Once upon a time, experts thought a diet high in animal fat, such as the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish like salmon, helped reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke. And people looked at those with a diet rich in fish as further proof of the supplement’s benefits. But more recent research has raised questions about whether other characteristics of seafood or something else common among fish-eaters has had a bigger effect, according to a column in the New York Times.

This is not the first study to raise doubts in recent years about how useful fish oil is for heart disease. Despite earlier recommendations that heart attack patient might benefit, reviews of clinical trials dating to 2012, plus other scientific analysis, found no benefit.

As with any medical advice, check with your doctor. But the studies do raise questions about whether the cost is truly giving the intended outcome.

Do you take fish oil? What about other supplements? Based on this research, would you save the cost and stop taking them? Let us know what you think.