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Another benefit of omega 3's


There's another health benefit potentially linked to omega 3's, according to a new study by researchers at Harvard Medical School.

Those who consume a good amount of omega 3's, the fatty acids mainly found in oily fish, may run a lower risk of developing gum disease, including periodontitis, which can lead to bone and tooth loss. In an interview with Reuters Health, senior Harvard researcher Dr. Kenneth Mukamal said "Omega 3's have a wide number of potentially beneficial effects on many organs. The gums may be a new one that hasn't been appreciated before."

The bacteria that accumulates and causes advanced gum disease seems to need inflammation to grow, and Dr. Mukamal said anti-inflammatory treatment with omega 3's seems to help experimental periodontitis in rabbits. "Our hope was to extend that to humans."

While Mukamal admitted the study doesn't pinpoint exactly how much omega 3 is best to prevent periodontitis (if it indeed proves to be protective), he did point out that two meals of fatty fish–such as salmon, mackerel, herring or albacore tuna–each week "seems like a very reasonable amount."

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