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DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is a long chain omega-3 fat.
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Together with EPA, they make up the major fat in fish oil. Fish oil has been shown to have broad health effects. Most fish oil supplements contain considerably more EPA than DHA, and therefore most of the beneficial effects have been attributed to EPA. However according to recently published results, DHA has some potent effects as well. This study had men supplement with either 7.5 DHA oil (3 g DHA) or the same amount of olive oil as a placebo for 3 months. Interestingly the DHA provided in this study was not from fish oil. It was produced from microalga and contained no EPA. Subjects did not otherwise change their diet and they maintained their same level of activity. The DHA group showed a significant decrease of 15% in C-reactive protein (CRP). CRP provides an index of inflammatory status and elevated levels have been shown to be a good predictor of future heart problems. DHA also improved other indicators of inflammation such as IL-6, and circulating neutrophils, and improved blood lipids. These findings show that DHA alone produced from plant sources has anti-inflammatory effects. For those who do not like the taste of fish or find fish oil capsules not palatable, this study suggest a viable option is DHA supplementation from microalga.

Kelley DS, Siegel D, Fedor DM, Adkins Y, Mackey BE. DHA supplementation decreases Serum C-reactive protein and other markers of inflammation in hypertriglyceridemic men. J Nutr. 2009 Mar;139(3):495-501. Epub 2009 Jan 21.