Omega-3s Won't Make You Smarter


omega 3sOh, man! Yet another miracle food/supplement isn't actually all that miraculous. Sheesh. First it was coconut water, then it was pomegranate juice ... now omega-3 fatty acids are under scrutiny. Because apparently, according to the most recent studies, omega-3s might NOT be bursting with brain-boosting benefits after all. Awww, so the wizard can't give me a new brain after all? Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!

Sad but true: The results of three large studies showed that individuals who took omega-3 for up to 3.5 years "didn't see an increase in memory, mental skills, or verbal skills."

Sigh. That was a waste of swallowing fish oil capsules and choking down flaxseed oil on a spoon, not to mention a waste of money. Well, maybe not a total waste ...


Omega-3s are still good for a bunch of other parts of your body. Studies show that EPA and DHA can lower triglycerides; still more studies have found that studies have found that fish oil supplements reduce stiffness and joint pain in rheumatoid arthritis.

Plus, all research has to be taken with a grain of salt. Study authors think the cognitive benefits of omega-3s may take longer than a few years to show up. After all, cognitive decline and dementia can take several years to develop.

Either way, I guess taking omega-3s can't hurt. Even if they won't make you an insta-genius.

Do you take omega-3 supplements?

Image via Peter Rosbjerg/Flickr

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