Effects of Long Chain Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids on Brain Function in Mildly Hypertensive Older Adults

Howe, Peter R. C. and Evans, Hamish M. and Kuszewski, Julia C. and Wong, Rachel H. X. (2018) Effects of Long Chain Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids on Brain Function in Mildly Hypertensive Older Adults. Nutrients, 10 (10):1413. pp. 1-14.

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Abstract

Purported benefits of long chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (LCn-3PUFA) for brain function may be attributable, at least in part, to improved cerebral perfusion. A pilot randomised controlled trial was undertaken to investigate effects of taking a DHA-rich fish oil supplement for 20 weeks on cerebrovascular function, mood and cognitive performance. Borderline hypertensives aged 40–85 years with low habitual LCn-3PUFA intake took four capsules/day of EPAX (1600 mg DHA + 400 mg EPA) or placebo (corn oil). Cerebrovascular function was assessed at baseline and after 20 weeks in 38 completers (19 on each supplement) using transcranial Doppler ultrasound of blood flow in the middle cerebral artery at rest and whilst performing a battery of cognitive tasks (neurovascular coupling). The primary outcome, cerebrovascular responsiveness (CVR) to hypercapnia, increased 26% (p = 0.024) in women; there was no change in men. In contrast, neurovascular coupling increased significantly (p = 0.01 for the overall response) in men only; the latter correlated with an increase of EPA in erythrocytes (r = 0.616, p = 0.002). There was no associated improvement of mood or cognition in either men or women. These preliminary observations indicate that LCn-3PUFA supplementation has the potential to enhance blood flow in the brain in response to both hypercapnic and cognitive stimuli. Future studies should examine differential effects of EPA and DHA and take account of the gender differences in responsiveness to supplementation.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Correction at https://eprints.usq.edu.au/49436/
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions
Date Deposited: 08 Jul 2022 01:07
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2022 02:55
Uncontrolled Keywords: cerebrovascular function; cognition; mood; cerebral blood flow; omega-3; hypertension
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1102 Cardiovascular Medicine and Haematology > 110299 Cardiovascular Medicine and Haematology not elsewhere classified
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1109 Neurosciences > 110999 Neurosciences not elsewhere classified
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1111 Nutrition and Dietetics > 111199 Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1116 Medical Physiology > 111699 Medical Physiology not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3208 Medical physiology > 320899 Medical physiology not elsewhere classified
32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3201 Cardiovascular medicine and haematology > 320199 Cardiovascular medicine and haematology not elsewhere classified
32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3210 Nutrition and dietetics > 321099 Nutrition and dietetics not elsewhere classified
32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3209 Neurosciences > 320999 Neurosciences not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10101413
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/49435

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