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Omega-3s support normal blood clotting

When an artery to the heart becomes narrow or blocked due to plaque build-up, doctors may try to surgically widen the artery in a procedure called balloon angioplasty.

After surgery, blood clots are more likely to form, raising chances for heart attacks. To avoid this, doctors give blood-thinning medications. Researchers wanted to test the anti-clotting capacity of omega-3s.

Fifty-four men and women, average age 63, with stable coronary artery disease and a recent successful balloon angioplasty, took the standard anti-clot medications, aspirin and clopidogrel, with or without 460 mg of EPA plus 380 mg of DHA per day.

Compared to those who did not take EPA and DHA, those who did had fewer abnormal blood-clotting factors, better blood-clotting traits, and a more balanced and controlled clotting process. Doctors also observed less oxidative stress in the omega-3 group.

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