Over the years I have taken different types of supplements for various reasons and the one I get a tremendous benefit from is fish oil. Lately I have had to cutback on the amount I take.
In place of fish oil supplements I am now eating fish as often as five times per week and I’ve notice no changes in my fitness or energy level or drop off in my overall health. If you aren’t eating fish on a regular I would recommend starting as soon as possible.
Many people are either allergic or just plain don’t like fish for whatever reason. To these folks I would encourage supplementation with a quality fish oil. Krill oil is just as effective or even more so.
Take them everyday for a month to six weeks and then take a break for a week. Cycle your supplements this way so you can test the effects of each type.
The following article discusses the impact of fish oil on the nerves in your extremities.
Omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil can slow or reverse nerve damage from diabetes
Approximately 50 percent of patients with diabetes suffer from nerve damage, or neuropathy. No cure exists, and the most effective treatment, keeping blood sugar in control, only slows neuropathy. A new study in the Journal of Neurophysiology, however, introduces a new alternative, omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil. The study shows that fish oil supplements can restore the condition of nerves damaged from diabetes in mice.
“Diabetic neuropathy is a very costly and debilitating complication of diabetes. It is the leading cause of foot ulcers and nontrauma-related amputations, and the impact of diabetic neuropathy on the patient and family are unmeasurable,” said Mark Yorek of the VA Medical Center in Iowa City, the study’s lead investigator. Fish oil is an attractive treatment approach because “supplements are considered very safe and could be easily translated into everyday care. Fish oil would be easy to take, like a vitamin, and should have few side effects when combined with other medications,” explained Yorek.
Previous studies of obesity and diabetes have reported better blood sugar handling, liver function and reduced inflammation with omega-3 fatty acids treatment. The health benefits were attributed to protective molecules produced from omega-3 fatty acids, including one type called resolvins. The research group had previously observed that diets enriched with omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil improved diabetic neuropathy in rats with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, and in this new study they examined why.
Researchers used a mouse model of diabetes to study the effect of fish oil. Diabetic mice were fed a high-fat diet and treated with daily injections of resolvin or given a high-fat diet in which half the fat came from fish oil. The results were compared to healthy, non-diabetic mice.
The researchers found that untreated diabetic mice had diminished sense of touch in their paws that corresponded to fewer nerves in the paw’s skin and slower transmission of signals along the nerves. The eyes of untreated diabetic mice also had fewer nerves. Though dietary fish oil and resolvin did not lower glucose levels closer to healthy range, they improved nerve health in terms of density and sensory signal transmission. The researchers also observed that resolvin stimulated nerve cells to grow.
“Even though a lot more work needs to be done, including clinical trials with human subjects, our animal studies suggest that fish oil can reverse some of the harmful effects of diabetes on the nerves. Our intent is to do more animal studies to demonstrate that fish oil treatment can reverse the harmful effects of diabetes on nerves even after a long period of poorly controlled diabetes. After completion of this work, we hope to begin studies with diabetic patients with neuropathy,” Yorek said.
The article “Effect of enriching the diet with menhaden oil or daily treatment with resolvin D1 on neuropathy in a mouse model of Type 2 diabetes” is published ahead-of-print in the Journal of Neurophysiology.
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P.S. As I discussed in a previous post, you can exercise with peripheral neuropathy but you need to consult with your medical care team as to which types of exercise to do for best results. Check your feet regularly for blisters or bruises and be sure to wear proper shoes and socks.
P.P.S. For more information on the types of exercises to do visit exercises for diabetics today.