Food and Behaviour Research

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1 April 2014 - Nutraingredients - Omega-3s science is rock solid, but you don't win every game, expert says

by Hank Schultz

When scientists seek to counteract bad press for omega-3s it is a matter of taking two steps forward while taking one back, said Bruce Holub, professor emeritus of the University of Guelph in Ontario.


Professor Bruce Holub has been involved with putting together a one-day meeting to update experts in the field on the latest science in the sector.  The event, entitled  DHA/EPA Omega3 for Health Symposium: Update 2014, is set to take place in Toronto on 22nd May and will bring together experts from the US, Canada and the UK to present their latest findings in the field.  Professor Holub will be chairing the meeting, which will also host presentations from Capt Joseph Hibbeln MD of the National Institutes of Health, Elizabeth Kerling, a research associate at the University of Kansas Medical Center, and Dr Alex Richardson, Senior Research Fellow from the University of Oxford, and founder/director of Food and Behaviour Research.
The issue is one in the forefront of the minds of omega-3 researchers, Holub said, with the widely publicized release last year of a study linking higher omega-3 intakes with an increased risk of prostate cancer in men.  That study was roundly criticized on a number of grounds, including that the higher levels of omega-3s mentioned in the study were very modest, and if the connection inferred in the paper were true, higher levels of prostate cancer would be observed in those countries where omega-3 intake is high.  Which is not the case.