Fish oil found to ease diabetes: Omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and increase insulin sensitivity

Omega-3 fatty acids have a molecular mechanism that efficiently reduces chronic inflammation and insulin resistance. This can help experts formulate a simple dietary remedy that can benefit an estimated 23 million individuals who are diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S.

Jerold Olefsky, M.D., along with his colleagues from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, recently isolated key receptors on white blood cells, or macrophages, which are found in obese body fat. There is a significant link between obesity and diabetes, and scientists say that omega-3 fatty acids, also known as fish oils, activate this cell macrophage receptor, which results in anti-inflammatory effects and helps boost insulin sensitivity.

Insulin resistance is the condition wherein the hormone insulin becomes less effective at regulating blood sugar levels in the body, which can cause Type 2 diabetes and other health problems.

The immune system response of these cell macrophages includes digesting cellular debris and pathogens. This response also involves the macrophages producing proteins that cause inflammation, a method that helps destroy harmful cells and objects.

Since obese fat tissue contains lots of these macrophages that produce lots of protein, this can result in chronic inflammation and increased insulin resistance. Fish oils interact with the receptors located on macrophages and this generates a strong anti-inflammatory effect.

Olefsky shared, “It’s just an incredibly potent effect.”

He continued, “The omega-3 fatty acids kill the inflammatory response. This is nature at work. The receptor responds to a natural product—omega-3 fatty acids—so that the inflammatory process can be controlled.”

Because fish oils can do this safely, it is possible that there can soon be a way to treat the problems of inflammation in obesity and in conditions like diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease via simple dietary supplementation.

In addition to supplementing one’s diet with fish oil, healthy dietary choices for diabetes management include:

  • Eating more fiber-rich foods like legumes, whole wheat flour, and wheat bran.
  • Eating more foods with healthy carbohydrates such as low-fat dairy products, fruits, and vegetables.
  • Reducing the intake of food products containing saturated and trans fats.
  • Limiting the intake of meats, eggs, and other high cholesterol foods.

More information about fish oil and its benefits

Fish oil is the fat or oil extracted from oily fish like herring, mackerel, and salmon. Fish oil is a well-known superfood due to its high omega-3 content, and it is one of the most consumed dietary supplements.

Fish oil contains essential vitamins and fatty acids that add to its beneficial effects on the body. Some of the important nutrients found in fish oil include docosanoic acid, eicosatetraenoic acid, and vitamin A, C, and D.

Fish oil is widely used because of its beneficial effects on the heart. The superfood is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids that help reduce the odds of developing heart diseases and heart arrhythmia.

Omega-3 in fish oil can also help lower bad cholesterol levels and increase good cholesterol levels. Fish oil can help inhibit triglyceride accumulation and reduce the risk of developing atherosclerosis. This superfood also promotes blood flow and improves the body’s overall blood circulation.

Regular intake of fish oil can help prevent gastrointestinal disorders, celiac disease, and short bowel syndrome. Aside from this, fish oil is effective in easing the discomfort caused by bone and joint conditions such as arthritis, rheumatism, and Raynaud’s symptoms.

Fish oil effectively improves the body’s immunity and it can fight off diseases such as colds, coughs, and the flu. Fish oil is also beneficial for pregnant women and their unborn children.

Fish oil helps boost the circulatory system, and the superfood is good for the digestive, skeletal, nervous, and immune systems. It can even help strengthen both the male and female reproductive systems.