Omega-3s reduce insulin resistance
by Newsletter Editor
About half of obese children are insulin resistant, meaning the insulin they produce does not metabolize food efficiently. In this study, 201 obese and insulin-resistant children took 1,800 mg of omega-3s, or 500 mg of the blood-sugar control drug metformin, per day. Metformin helps reduce insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes. The children were similar in age, insulin resistance, and body mass index scores at the start of the study.
After 12 weeks, while there was little change in the metformin group, children who had taken omega-3s had much lower circulating levels of glucose and insulin, indicating less insulin resistance.
For lipids, metformin raised HDL, and lowered LDL—the good and bad cholesterols, respectively—but total triglycerides were unchanged. The omega-3 group had significantly lower levels of triglycerides, reducing chances of developing type 2 diabetes, doctors said.
For body mass index scores, those in the metformin group saw a slight improvement while children in the omega-3 group had significantly lower, and healthier body mass index scores.
Reference: Diabetes Care; 2013, Vol. 36, No. 7, 1842-50
Pediatric Diabetes. 2013 Aug;14(5):377-83