FBPixel Randomized, crossover, head-to-head comparison of EPA and DHA supplementation to reduce inflammation markers in men and women: the Comparing EPA to DHA Study - David Perlmutter M.D.

Science

Study Title
Randomized, crossover, head-to-head comparison of EPA and DHA supplementation to reduce inflammation markers in men and women: the Comparing EPA to DHA Study
Publication
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Author(s)

Janie Allaire, Patrick Couture, Myriam Leclerc, Amélie Charest, Johanne Marin, Marie-Claude Lépine, Denis Talbot, André Tchernof, and Benoit Lamarche

Abstract

Background:
To date, most studies on the anti-inflammatory effects of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in humans have used a mixture of the 2 fatty acids in various forms and proportions.
Objectives:
We compared the effects of EPA supplementation with those of DHA supplementation (re-esterified triacylglycerol; 90% pure) on inflammation markers (primary outcome) and blood lipids (secondary outcome) in men and women at risk of cardio- vascular disease.
Design:
In a double-blind, randomized, crossover, controlled study, healthy men (n = 48) and women (n = 106) with abdominal obesity and low-grade systemic inflammation consumed 3 g/d of the following supplements for periods of 10 wk: 1) EPA (2.7 g/d), 2) DHA (2.7 g/d), and 3) corn oil as a control with each supplementation sep- arated by a 9-wk washout period. Primary analyses assessed the difference in cardiometabolic outcomes between EPA and DHA.
Results:
Supplementation with DHA compared with supplementation with EPA led to a greater reduction in interleukin-18 (IL-18) (27.0% 6 2.8% compared with 20.5% 6 3.0%, respectively; P = 0.01) and a greater increase in adiponectin (3.1% 6 1.6% compared with 21.2% 6 1.7%, respectively; P , 0.001). Between DHA and EPA, changes in CRP (27.9% 6 5.0% compared with 21.8% 6 6.5%, respectively; P = 0.25), IL-6 (212.0% 6 7.0% compared with 213.4% 6 7.0%, respectively; P = 0.86), and tumor necrosis factor-a (214.8% 6 5.1% compared with 27.6% 6 10.2%, respectively; P = 0.63) were NS. DHA compared with EPA led to more pronounced reductions in triglycerides (213.3% 6 2.3% compared with 211.9% 6 2.2%, respectively; P = 0.005) and the cholesterol:HDL-cholesterol ratio (22.5% 6 1.3% compared with 0.3% 6 1.1%, respectively; P = 0.006) and greater increases in HDL cholesterol (7.6% 6 1.4% compared with 20.7% 6 1.1%, respectively; P , 0.0001) and LDL cholesterol (6.9% 6 1.8% compared with 2.2% 6 1.6%, respectively; P = 0.04). The increase in LDL-cholesterol concentrations for DHA compared with EPA was significant in men but not in women (P-treatment 3 sex interaction = 0.046).
Conclusions:
DHA is more effective than EPA in modulating specific markers of inflammation as well as blood lipids. Additional studies are needed to determine the effect of a long-term DHA supplementation per se on cardiovascular disease risk.

Date
June 8, 2016
View study

Share This

Related Topics

Fish OilDHAInflammationObesity

Dr. David Perlmutter is on the cutting edge of innovative medicine that looks at all lifestyle influences on health and illness.

Andrew Weil, MD