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Omega-3s boost “exercise economy”

In this exercise study, 20 men took 3,600 mg of EPA-rich fish oil per day, or a placebo. After eight weeks there was no change in the placebo group, but in the omega-3 group EPA levels increased 148 percent and DHA levels 13 percent.

During a cycling test, doctors found the men with higher red blood cell levels of EPA required less oxygen compared to the same test at the beginning of the study. Doctors call this inverse effect of EPA levels on oxygen demand “exercise economy.” The EPA group also had a psychological benefit—feeling they needed to use less energy to complete the cycling test.

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