High doses of Omega 3 fatty acids (9.6 grams/day—@5 times the dose I recommend for pain relief) have been shown in two studies to significantly reduce symptoms of bipolar depression. Both studies used a ratio of 2:1 of EPA to DHA. (Over-the-counter brands usually have a 3:2 ratio which doesn’t have sufficient quantity of EPA to get the same effect.) This has major implications for patients who have been forced to take psychiatric drugs to stay functional. Both studies were double blind, placebo-controlled trials, considered the gold standard in research. (1,2) This high dose was well tolerated with the only side effect being loose stools in some patients.
The authors of Study #2 commented that patients with depression have significantly low amounts of EPA and DHA in their diet as measured throughout their cells. This alters the cell membrane structure at the lowest level, preventing the proper conduction of particles in and out of the cell. This keeps DNA from being controlled properly (then the right hormones don’t get turned on/off). By incorporating large amounts of EPA and DHA via supplement, slowly, the cells throughout the body rebuild using the right quality of fat instead of the junky fats usually consumed in the typical American diet. Limit alcohol and smoking which wreck omega-3 bonds in the cell membranes via oxidation. So the more you drink and smoke, the more Omega-3’s you need to equalize the effect on your body at the cell level!
1 Stoll, Severus et al Archives of General
Psychiatry 56(5):407-12 (1999-05-01)
2 Su, Huang, Chiu, Shen European Neuropsychopharmacology
13 (2003) 267-271