Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Could Fish Oil Help Cut Military Suicides?

We know that fish oil offers benefits to the brain and heart, but the US Army wants to know if fish oil may help lower the high rates of suicide in soldiers?
Researchers from the National Institutes of Health measured the blood levels of the omega-3 fatty acid known as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in one group who had committed suicide and those who had not.

It was discovered that those who had low DHA levels were 62 percent more likely to have committed suicide. These findings were published last month in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.
It's not being suggested that fish oil supplements are the magic pills that would cut military suicide rates, but it's something the army is exploring.
“I’m all over it, because I’m looking for something to help,” Gen. Peter Chiarelli, the Army’s vice chief of staff said.

Last year, 159 active duty military servicemembers killed themselves and National Guardsmen and Army reservists are committing suicide as well, with 145 killing themselves last year.