The British Journal of Ophthalmology has reported that omega-3-fatty acids may slow the progression of early age-related macular degeneration to advanced disease. May is the operative word here, warns ACSH's Dr. Ruth Kava.
The problem with this study, explains ACSH's Dr. Gilbert Ross, is that the primary endpoint was apparently a controlled random trial to see which supplement placebo, antioxidants, zinc, or antioxidants plus zinc slowed macular disease. They found that none of them worked, but the pre-study food frequency questionnaires showed that diets with high amounts of omega-3 s were the only thing with any positive correlation whatsoever. That wasn t even what they were researching, so there was no data about how many patients had any benefit or what kind.
This is a pretty clear case of data dredging, says Dr. Kava.
Dr. Ross agrees: I have no problem with omega-3 s, but that study isn t worth the paper it s written on.