, Volume 13, Issue 2, pp 279-288
Date: 17 Jan 2013

Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids and Type 2 Diabetes

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Polyunsaturated fatty acids are of particular interest in the nutritional therapy for diabetes, given their potential role in several pathophysiological processes related to cardiovascular disease. Both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are beneficial for improving lipid profiles in healthy individuals and among type 2 diabetic patients: Supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids lowers triglycerides and VLDL-cholesterol. However, they might also increase LDL-cholesterol. Omega-3 fatty acids are, from the latest evidence, not related to mortality and cardiovascular disease. Similarly, glucose control and hypertension, as well as risk of microvascular complications, seem unaffected by omega-3 supplementation. Most studies involved mainly patients with type 2 diabetes, and future research needs to focus on the type 1 diabetic patient. Also, the role of omega-6 fatty acids remains largely unknown.