Eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids could significantly reduce the damage caused by air pollution, according to new research.
Omega-3 fatty acids (OFAs) found in a wide variety of foods, including fatty fish, soybeans, and spinach, could reduce inflammation and oxidative stress from air pollution by up to half, according to the study conducted in mice.
However, research also shows that air pollution particles can enter many important organs, including the brain and testes, through the lungs of laboratory animals. This increases the possibility that the health damage caused by toxic air is even greater than is currently known, The Guardian reported on Friday.
“I would definitely recommend taking OFAs to counter air pollution problems,” said senior researcher Jing Kang of Massachusetts General Hospital, part of Harvard Medical School in the United States, as saying.
“OFAs are known to have many other healthy benefits, and most importantly, they’re not like a drug, but a nutrient with so many benefits,” Kang said.
Two to four grams per day in humans would be the equivalent dose given to mice, Kang said.
Research suggests that omega-3s could provide an immediate and practical solution to reducing the burden of disease from air pollution.