Fish Oil Could Relieve Diabetic Neuropathy

Nerve damage affects about 50 percent of people with diabetes, according to the American Physiological Society.

Numbness, tingling and pain in the fingers, hands, legs and feet are common side effects of diabetic neuropathy, which can lead to ulcers and - in worst-case scenarios - amputations.

A recent study suggests that supplementing with fish oil, however, may help to restore nerves to a healthy state.

"Fish oil would be easy to take, like a vitamin, and should have few side effects when combined with other medications," said lead study investigator Mark Yorek, from the VA Medical Center in Iowa City.

Amazing omegas

The healing properties of fish oil lie in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to help reduce inflammation, lubricate the joints and improve eye health, liver function and blood sugar control.

Using a mouse model, researchers studied how fish oil changed nerve sensitivity in diabetic mice who were getting fish oil injections. These rodents were compared with a control group of non-diabetic mice who did not receive fish oil supplements.

Results showed that while fish oil was not linked to lower glucose levels, it was associated with better nerve health - both measures of nerve density and sensory signal transmission improved in mice who received the injections.

"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," Yorek said. "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."

The study is published in the Journal of Neurophysiology.

Source: American Physiological Society

Get a Free Diabetes Meal Plan

Get a free 7-Day Diabetes Meal Plan from Constance Brown-Riggs who is a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator and who is also a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Just enter in your email below to download your free Diabetes Meal Plan.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to InformationAboutDiabetes.com who may contact you with updates and information and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy.

More Articles

It is estimated that 80,000 children and adolescents each year are diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. Juvenile diabetes is diagnosed when the body...

As the summer months come to an end, we throw aside our swimsuits and bring out our favorite team jerseys! In America, fall means football, and...

The medical community relies heavily on the goodwill of its citizens, as giving blood and organ donations help save thousands of lives every year...

Evidence is mounting that consuming black cumin helps to manage type 2 diabetes. The spice lowered blood glucose...

It's not uncommon to spend several years living with type 2 diabetes and not even know you have the condition. Despite regular check-ups with your...

More Articles

Type 2 diabetes has become so common in Western culture and media that this often lifelong, serious condition doesn't really raise an eyebrow...

Limiting our intake of highly processed foods, and eating more whole and lightly processed fare can boost our nutrient and fiber intake, lower...

Lantus is a once a day insulin injection that is taken at the same time every day. It replaces anywhere from the average three to five insulin...

Improving your A1C reading requires you to maintain consistently healthy blood...

Just because you have diabetes doesn't mean you can't help your community by being a blood donor. When persons with diabetes maintain good control...

Most of us do not regularly keep the fruit that scientists call Fortunella margarita in our refrigerator. That these small, yellow-orange...

A diagnosis of diabetes usually comes with a list of recommended lifestyle changes. To make these diet and exercise...

Having diabetes affects your body’s ability to handle hot, humid weather, and steamy temperatures can degrade diabetes supplies. But all of this...

Fashion and function come together in clothing developed by AnnaPS, making life a bit more comfortable and convenient for insulin users. The...

Not only is dry skin uncomfortable, but scratched or cracked skin is also susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections – common medical...

One way to ensure our body gets a variety of nutrients is eating nutrient-dense foods, and one of the most nutrient-dense foods on our planet is...

Financial aid and scholarship money are available for people with diabetes, but acquiring it requires an investment of time and patience. Whether...

Any sweetener you use to replace table sugar is a sugar substitute. One type of sugar substitute is artificial sweetener. Three other types...

Smoking is a proven health hazard for everyone, but it is an especially dangerous habit for those with diabetes. Research shows that smokers with...

While life on the road can be tough on musicians, it’s especially challenging for those battling diabetes. Some musicians have to check their...