Men in Norfolk key to groundbreaking heart disease research

Researchers at the University of East Anglia are looking for 40 Norfolk men to help with a study into how fish oils reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.

They are looking for volunteers aged 35-55 who are non-smokers and without a history of heart disease, diabetes or cancer.

The study aims to pinpoint exactly which element of fish oils is most effective at improving cardio vascular health.

As well as helping to improve medical understanding, volunteers will receive £150.

Fish products contain two main omega-3 fatty acids, called Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The researchers will investigate which of these fatty acids has the most benefits.

Participants will be asked to attend a clinic at UEA three times over four months. During these visits they will have blood samples taken before and after consuming a chocolate-flavoured drink containing different kinds of omega-3 fats.

Prof Anne-Marie Minihane, who is leading the study at UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said: “Recent evidence shows that part of the reason omega-3 fatty acids benefit humans is because they improve the ‘elasticity’ of major arteries.

“This could help to prevent heart disease and stroke and other health problems such as dementia, and the volunteers in this study will be instrumental in advancing current knowledge in this area.”

Volunteers cannot be taking blood pressure or cholesterol-lowering drugs, or omega-3 supplements.

For more information about the study email s.mcmanus@uea.ac.uk or call 07539 192809.