non-randomized human trial of fish oil published last month in Public Library of Science ONE (PLoS ONE) in which the authors concluded that fish oil supplements improved working memory. They arrived at their statement after giving 2g/d of Lovaza containing docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) 750mg/d & eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) 930mg/d to 11 young overweight non-smoking men & women w/average body mass index of 25.6 for 6 months. Working memory, positron emission tomography imaging and blood tests were analyzed before & after fish oil supplementation. Baseline DHA levels were associated w/working memory which improved after supplementation, despite no observable change in PET scan or measurable chemical pathway.In that vein, I'd like to point out a
So why am I discussing this case? Well, in this small group of young men & women who were otherwise healthy (aside from being overweight) and had good baseline working memory, supplementation improved said working memory. And that's what counts for our patients. They don't really care why it improved or how it improved. Granted, I can't recommend fish oil supplements to everyone based on this incredibly small, short non-randomized, non-controlled trial, but at least we have some demonstration of benefit. Which is a reasonable place to start.