Oily fish cut AMD risk by 50%

September 1, 2008

Eating oily fish just once a week may cut the risk of developing wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by half, according to results of the EUREYE study, published in the August 2008 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Eating oily fish just once a week may cut the risk of developing wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by half, according to results of the EUREYE study, published in the August 2008 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Astrid Fletcher, Professor of Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK and colleagues conducted a multicentre control study evaluating the relationship between oily fish (omega 3) consumption and AMD incidence. The team conducted a questionnaire on dietary habits and correlated the results with food composition tables, looking specifically at the levels of docosahexaenoicacid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) in the diets of wet AMD sufferers compared with the control group.

The team found that subjects who consumed omega 3-rich oily fish, such as salmon, trout and swordfish, once weekly, were 50% less likely to develop wet AMD than those who consume it more rarely, although these risk reduction benefits did not extend to non-oily white fish, such as cod, haddock and sea bass. High levels of DHA and EPA showed a statistically significant correlation to low incidences of wet AMD. The team did not investigate the impact of omega 3 nutritional supplements.

The researchers concluded, in results consistent with those that have previously been achieved in the US and Australia, that omega 3 derived from dietary oily fish reduces the risk of wet AMD.