June 13, 2007

Irish Daily Mail Date: Wednesday, June 13, 2007 

Author: Fiona MacRae

Headline: Cod liver oil cuts risk of depression

IT USED to be given to children as its high vitamin content improved their physical health. Now research suggests that cod liver oil can make another claim that it staves off depression. Scientists say a spoonful a day cuts the risk by 30 per cent. These findings are the latest evidence of the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids, which are a major constituent of cod liver oil.

Omega-3s are said to boost children's brains, reduce the risk of strokes and heart attacks, and protect against cancer. The research into cod liver oil examined the health and dietary habits of almost 22,000 subjects aged 40 and over. It showed that those who rarely or never consumed it had higher rates of depression, stress or anxiety. However, the nine per cent who downed a spoonful every day were 30 per cent less likely to be struck down by the blues. Around a fifth of the population are affected by depression some time in their lives.