Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Omega 3 fish oil EPA and chronic fatigue syndrome the real science

Omega 3 fish oil EPA and chronic fatigue syndrome the real science

Omega 3 fish oil EPA and chronic fatigue syndrome the real science

By: David McEvoy

Since the publication of a book called 'Beat Chronic Fatigue The Natural Way', many people are turning to the natural substance omega 3, and in particular pure ethyl EPA, to help treat the debilitating condition known as chronic fatigue syndrome.

What is chronic fatigue syndrome?

We all get tired. Many of us have felt depressed at times. But the mysterious chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is not like the normal ups and downs we experience in everyday life. The early sign of this illness is a strong and noticeable fatigue that comes on suddenly and often comes and goes and sometimes, it never stops. You sometimes feel too tired to do normal activities or are easily exhausted with no apparent reason. Unlike the mind fog of a serious hangover, to which researchers have compared CFS, the profound weakness of CFS does not go away with a few good nights of sleep. Instead, it slyly steals your energy and vigour over months and sometimes years.

Who gets chronic fatigue syndrome?

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) affects both men and women, and its incidence cuts across wide strata of age as well as racial and socio-economic groups. It was first described in the 1930s; CFS received a flurry of publicity in the mid-1980s when the syndrome was erroneously associated with the Epstein-Barr virus. In the early to mid-1990s it was being described as 'yuppie flu'.

Symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome

  • muscle aches and pains, especially after physical exertion
  • feeling depressed and emotional
  • poor sleep, difficulty getting off to sleep, frequent wakings, and not feeling refreshed after sleep
  • nausea and loss of appetite
  • a recurrent sore throat, feeling of enlarged glands in the neck which come and go
  • running a slightly high temperature for no apparent reason
  • feeling of faintness and dizziness

Omega 3 fish oil EPA and chronic Fatigue syndrome

The most recent study that has been performed was published in the journal Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica. In the study, doctors from London found that in the brains of people with chronic fatigue syndrome there are high levels of two key chemicals, choline and creatine.

Choline is important for controlling fat levels in brain cells while creatine provides energy.

The doctors said the findings suggested CFS patients had abnormal phospholipid metabolisms. Phospholipids are special types of fats which are an essential component of cells. They are protected by certain types of fatty acids.

The London doctors believed fatty acid supplements could help to restore the chemical imbalance in the brain and alleviate the symptoms of CFS. EPA, which is found in omega 3 fish oil supplements, may be particularly useful.

The leader of the study said: "This study suggests that if patients with CFS take a high-EPA fatty acid supplement, then this should have a beneficial action on the chemical imbalances in the brain which we have identified."

Since this study was published further advances have been made, and the findings released by a leading professor in the United Kingdom state clearly that he considers Chronic Fatigue Syndrome to be a genuine physical illness. The professor describes how he came to conclude that CFS could be successfully treated by supplementation with essential fatty acids, specifically ultra-pure EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and virgin evening primrose oil.

The professor describes the changes in the immune system seen with CFS, as a reduction in natural killer cell activity and a shift from TH1 cell activity toward increased TH2 cell activity, known as a type 2 immune response. He believes that this is best explained by the presence of a pre-existing, long-term, viral infection to which the immune system is reacting.
Using MRI scanning to carry out neurospectroscopy examinations of people with CFS, in order to obtain information about the chemistry of the living brain, the professor demonstrated a clear difference between the brains of people with CFS and 'normal' volunteers; the results indicated a very significant change in the turnover of fatty acids in the cell membranes of CFS sufferers.

Essential fatty acids - linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha linolenic acid (omega-3) - are known as such because they must be acquired from food and cannot be manufactured by the body. The professor explains how viruses can cause the symptoms of CFS by inhibiting a crucial enzyme in the chains that convert these essential fatty acids into other fatty acids required by the body, including GLA (gamma-linolenic acid), EPA and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). This leads to a deficiency in these fatty acids. He believes the resulting lack of EFAs in the body leads to many of the symptoms familiar to CFS sufferers, including tiredness, poor immune response and painful joints.

The professor concluded by saying that by giving patients large amounts of GLA and EPA the effects of the virus can be circumvented and how CFS patients taking high-dose supplements reported improvements in symptoms within 12 weeks. Crucially, the supplement should be DHA-free, which means that the majority of fish oil supplements, which contain both EPA and DHA, are not suitable. The Professor also strongly believes that the type of DHA found in most fish oil supplements inhibits some of the beneficial actions of EPA.


Since both these sets of findings were released, more and more people are turning to high grade ethyl EPA fish oil to help with this debilitating condition. Whether this will lead to a mainstream treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome, and whether it will work for all sufferers, remains to be seen. However, a large majority of people who are trying this as a form of treatment are reporting some very interesting and very good results.


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Dave McEvoy: A great resource for high grade ethyl EPA with a concentration strength of 90% and no DHA visit

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A Helpful Tool For People Searching For Clinical Research Trials



Sometimes the search for a good doctor can be quite nerve wracking even under the best of circumstances, but the emotional burden becomes even greater when searching for doctors who are participating in clinical trials.

Trial Reach and CureClick know this; so they developed a tool which makes the search for clinical research trials a bit easier.

Last July CureClick and Trial Reach asked if I would like to help out with this task; since I'm a CureClick Ambassador I was happy to help.

At this very moment you can use the Trial Reach Clinical Trials Search Tool that I embedded in the sidebar of Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM).

The clinical trials search tool is absolutely amazing! The tool is designed so that users can search for any clinical trial for any condition. Then the tool provides relevant results based on the user answering a few questions. Now you can search for clinical trials that best fit your needs.

Although I receive a small one time payment for installing the Trial Reach Clinical Trials Search Tool on Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM), the potential benefit to all of you is what inspired me to install it on this website. So, please take the time to use it. And tell all of your family and friends about it, too!

To learn more about my relationship with CureClick and why I'm talking about clinical trials, please click on this link.


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What You Need To Know About Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptoms



Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a disorder that causes sufferers to experience extreme tiredness which interferes with daily activities., a website maintained by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health, says the disorder may affect up to one million Americans, although less than one quarter of such cases have been diagnosed. Although CFS is prevalent among women, it can strike people from all age groups and walks of life.

Scientists have yet to determine the cause of chronic fatigue syndrome, but they are making progress in this area (read my article "Scientists Identify Possible Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Biomarker"). The Department of Health and Human Service's Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Fact Sheet reports that it's difficult to determine if a person has the disorder because one of its primary symptoms - extreme tiredness - is common to many illnesses. However, government health experts say these symptoms are often associated with CFS:

  • tiredness that lasts 24 hours after engaging in physical or mental exercise
  • forgetfulness or difficulty focusing on tasks
  • continuing to feel tired even after sleeping
  • muscle aches and pains
  • achy or painful joints without redness or swelling
  • headaches of a new type, pattern or strength
  • sore throat
  • tenderness of lymph nodes in the neck or underarm
  • chills and night sweats
  • blurry vision
  • irritable bowel
  • allergies and sensitivities to food, odors, chemicals, medications, and noise/sound
  • difficulty sitting, standing up, maintaining balance
  •  fainting


What Does This Mean To You?

Currently, there is no cure for chronic fatigue syndrome (also referred to as chronic fatigue and immune dysfunction syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis), but there are ways to manage its symptoms. Experts caution against using dietary supplements, herbal remedies because they could be harmful. Government health officials instead offer these chronic fatigue syndrome treatment suggestions which include:

  • keeping a journal of your daily activities, making note of activities that tend to make you tired and when they occur
  • cutting back on activities that tire you out and to differentiate between activities that are important and those which you don't need to do as often
  • using yoga, massage, stretching, chiropractic care and acupuncture
  • joining a CFS support group
  • using talk therapy to cope with your feelings

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services also suggests that you talk with your doctor about your symptoms and ways to deal with your lack of energy. CFS may be painful, but it doesn't have to control you.

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Article Source Chronic fatigue syndrome fact sheet.

"What You Need To Know About Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptoms" copyright 2011 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy. All Rights Reserved.


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Scientists Identify Possible Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Biomarker




According to a report published in the journal Behavioral and Brain Functions, scientists may have found a neuropeptide that can aid in the diagnosis and treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome.

This is the conclusion of Mary Fletcher of the University of Miami who headed a team of research scientists who sought to determine the usefulness of a neurotransmitter associated with stress as a biomarker for the severity of symptoms and stress for chronic fatigue syndrome. 

For the scientific investigation, 230 subjects from research studies conducted at the University of Miami or the Miami Veterans Administration Health Care Center between 2002 - 2010 were recruited.

Included in this number  were ninety-three patients whom were being treated for chronic fatigue syndrome at University of Miami Miller School of Medicine CFS and Immunodeficiency Clinic.

Scientists found that a specific type of protein molecule, neuropeptide Y, that is released from neurons during times of stress, was elevated in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome.

Because of this evidence, Fletcher believes neuropeptide Y can be useful in the diagnosis and treatment of CFS.


What Does This Development Mean For You?

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a disease that is hard to diagnose because its symptoms overlap the nervous, endocrine and immune systems.

Most physicians rely on behavioral indicators for diagnosis.

Therefore, the identification of a possible biomarker would provide health care professionals with a biological tool that would aid in diagnosis and treatment of the condition.

This would benefit those suffering from CFS because it would help improve their quality of care.

4 Therefore, among God's churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring. 5 All this is evidence that God's judgment is right, and as a result you will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering. 2 Thessalonians 1:4-5

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Article Source

Fletcher et al: Plasma neuropeptide Y: a biomarker for symptom severity in chronic fatigue syndrome. Behavioral and Brain Functions 2010 6:76.

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Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Treatment

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Treatment
By Jan Hartman

Alternative medicine offers a different approach to treating
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). Many of these treatments offer
relief from the symptoms of CFS.

The Diagnosis - Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

The medical profession has defined the following two criteria
for for chronic fatigue syndrome:

Severe, debilitating fatigue for six months or longer, with an
exclusion of other medical conditions. Coexisting with this
fatigue, at least four of the following symptoms:

sore throat

tender lymph nodes

multi-joint pain without swollenness or inflamation

muscle pain

headaches not experienced before in pattern or severity

awakening from sleep and not feeling rested.

These symptoms must not have been experienced before chronic
fatigue. They also must have recurred or persisted for at least
six months.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - Causes What Causes Chronic Fatigue

The cause of chronic fatigue syndrome is not known and there
are no specific laboratory tests to diagnose and identify this
disability. Different causes may trigger CFS, such as stress,
viral infection, nutrient deficiency, hormone imbalances and

Viral Infection

Chronic infection with viruses, such as Epstein-Barr virus,
cytomegalovirus, and human herpes virus 6, might contribute to
the development of chronic fatigue syndrome in some people.

Immune Dysfunction

Immunologic malfunction is thought to be involved in chronic
fatigue syndrome. The inappropriate production of inflammatory
cytokines is this immunologic malfunction. This results in
incorrect excessive amounts of nitric oxide and peroxynitrite to
be produced which produces fatigue.

Hormone Imbalances

Some studies have found that people with chronic fatigue
syndrome have lower levels of the hormone cortisol, which is
secreted by the adrenal glands. Low levels of cortisol may
increase inflammation and activate immune cells. Thyroid
disorders have also been blamed in chronic fatigue syndrome.

Natural Treatments for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

At the present time there is no known treatment for chronic
fatigue syndrome. This leads sufferers of chronic fatigue
syndrome to seek out complementary and alternative treatments.

Chronic fatigue Syndrome can be treated by a number of natural

1.) L-Carnitine Carnitine is found in nearly all body cells. It
is responsible for carrying long-chain fatty acids into
mitochondria, the energy-producing centers of cells. It allows
these fatty acids to be changed into energy.

Medical studies have found that carnitine levels in the body
are decreased in people with chronic fatigue syndrome.
Improperly low levels of carnitine has been linked with muscle
fatigue, pain and poor ability to exercise. Other studies
performed have not found a relationship between low levels of
carnitine and the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.

Additional L-carnitine supplements are usually tolerated well.
High doses of L-carnitine can cause indigestion and diarrhea. A
rare side effect that has been observed with L-carnitine use is
seizures in patients with or without pre-existing seizure

2.) Coenzyme Q10 Coenzyme Q10 (Co Q10) is a substance naturally
present in the mitochondria. Mitochondria is the
energy-producing nucleus of our cells. Co Q10 is involved in the
production of ATP. ATP is the fundemental energy source of body
cells. Co Q10 is also an antioxidant.

3.) Ginseng Ginseng is an herb that has been used in Asia for
many years to improve energy levels. Studies have shown that it
increases energy. Researchers have also discovered that ginseng
enhances cellular immune function.

4.) Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NADH) NADH is a
naturally occurring molecule formed from vitamin B3 that is
necessary for production of energy at the cellular level.

5) Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) DHEA is a hormone secreted by
the adrenal glands and in smaller amounts by the ovaries and
testes. DHEA can be converted into other steroid hormones in the
body, such as estrogen and testosterone. DHEA levels affect
memory, sleep, and mood. Studies have shown that DHEA-s levels
are not normal in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome. DHEA
therapy is not recommended unless lab tests show there is a
deficiency. Treatment should be closely supervised by a
qualified doctor. The long-term safety of DHEA treatment is not

6) Essential Fatty Acids Essential fatty acids have been used
in the treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome. Viruses diminish
the capacity of cells to make 6-desaturated essential fatty
acids and adding additional essential fatty acids corrects this

7) Traditional Chinese Medicine Chinese medicine has found that
chronic fatigue syndrome may be related to the following
syndromes in traditional Chinese medicine:

essence deficiency
spleen qi deficiency
kidney yin deficiency
kidney yang deficiency

8) Ayurveda

Ayurveda is the traditional medicine of India. Treatment for
chronic fatigue syndrome with Ayurveda methods would be to rid
the body of toxins with a detox program. Ayurvedic herbs will be
used, such as triphala, lomatiumashwagandha, amla, bala,
triphala, and lomatium. These herbs are combined depending on
the patient's constitutional type or dosha. Your Ayurvedic type
recommends certain foods you should eat to maintain good health.

Other natural treatments for chronic fatigue syndrome involve
ingesting probiotics, magnesium, beta-carotene, vitamin C,
melatonin, glutamine, licorice, folic acid, whey protein, and

About the Author: Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), is a
complicated medical condition that causes severe fatigue that
becomes worse with physical activity. CFS fatigue symptoms do
not improve with rest. Please visit us at for
more detailed, free information.


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