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Oily Fish and the Heart. DR CHARMAINE GRIFFITHS British Heart Foundation. bhf.org.uk. The scale of the problem.

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oily fish and the heart

Oily Fish and the Heart

DR CHARMAINE GRIFFITHSBritish Heart Foundation



The scale of the problem

  • Heart and circulatory disease is the UK’s biggest killer- Every 2 minutes someone in the UK has a heart attack- Over 2.7 million people are living with coronary heart disease (CHD)- Last year more than 117,000 people died from CHDBHF CHD Statistics (2004)

Preventing CHD

Fish is a good source of protein, vitamins A, B & D and minerals such as calciumOily fish is a rich source of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids which can help to:- Reduce platelet clotting- Lower blood triglycerides - May have potential benefit for heart rhythm disturbances


Helping those with CHD

There is evidence to suggest that people who have CHD should eat 2 or 3 portions of oily fish a week to reduce their chance of dying from another heart attack. Burr et al (1989) Our body cannot synthesise omega-3 fatty acids - they must be ingested.


BHF recommendations

  • Aim to eat fish twice a week with one portion being oily- As part of a balanced diet: five portions of fruit and vegetables each day, low salt, low in saturated fat Simple lifestyle measures such as these, along with stopping smoking and being active, can help to reduce risk of CHD