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A common, easy-to-find supplement might help women lower their risk of breast cancer.
Hi, I'm Dr. Cindy Haines, host of HealthDay TV.
Fish oil supplements are typically promoted for heart protection. The American Heart Association, for example, suggests that people who have coronary heart disease may want to consider taking them.
But new research shows that fish oil could also be useful against breast cancer. Researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle followed more than 35,000 older women who had gone through menopause. At the beginning of the study, the women answered questions about their use of supplements.
Over the next six years, women who were regularly taking fish oil had a 32-percent lower risk of developing breast cancer. A variety of other supplements that some women take for menopausal symptoms - like black cohosh and St. John's Wort - weren't linked to risk.
The researchers suggest that fish oil might reduce the risk due to its anti-inflammatory properties. Long-term inflammation in the body has been linked to many processes involved in the development and growth of cancer.
However, they point out that more research is needed before these supplements can be recommended for lowering breast cancer risk.
I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV, with the news that doctors are reading; health news that matters to you.