Fish Oil Enhances Exercise Benefits in Postmenopausal Women

Date: November 17, 2023. A study reported on October 25, 2023, in Nutrients reveals that the addition of fish oil to resistance exercise can boost muscle function and reduce cardiometabolic risk factors in postmenopausal women.

Summary: The study involved 20 postmenopausal women with an average age of 65.65 years who underwent an eight-week, twice-per-week resistance exercise training regimen. Half of the participants were given fish oil with each meal, providing 2.1 grams of EPA and 0.72 grams of DHA per day, while the other half received a placebo. Various parameters, including strength (evaluated by handgrip), leg strength, activities of daily living, blood pressure, triglycerides, oxidative stress markers (malondialdehyde and 8-OHdG), and inflammation markers (interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor-alpha), were assessed before and after the intervention.

Key Findings: Both groups showed improvement in physical function at the end of the treatment period. The fish oil group experienced a notable 5.7% increase in handgrip strength compared to the beginning of the study, surpassing the 2% increase observed in the placebo group. Additionally, the fish oil group exhibited reductions in systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial pressure, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6, malondialdehyde, and 8-OHdG, while these parameters remained largely unchanged in the placebo group.

Conclusion: Authors Sang-Rok Lee and Dean Directo from New Mexico State University concluded, “The present study illustrates that fish oil administration over an eight-week period of programmed resistance exercise training amplifies the beneficial effects of resistance exercise training on muscle strength. Simultaneously, it helps mitigate risk factors linked to cardiometabolic disorders in older females. Particularly, the combination of fish oil administration with resistance exercise training exhibits potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, providing potential protection against the onset of various geriatric syndromes linked to chronic low-grade inflammation and/or aberrant oxidative stress in older women.”

—D Dye

Source: Life Extension Foundation/ Science and Research

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