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Supplementing with the omega-3 DHA lowers periodontitis risk, according to a study from Harvard Medical School. In this double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 55 adults with moderate periodontitis were randomized to either 2,000 milligrams of DHA or placebos. All patients received 81 milligrams of aspirin. After 3 months, blood levels of DHA had almost doubled in the supplemented group and the gingival pocket depth in these subjects had significantly decreased, while the placebo group showed no improvements. 

In Perspective: Periodontitis is a chronic disorder caused by bacteria at the gum line that causes gingival separation from the tooth and systemic inflammation. Traditional therapies have addressed the bacterial infection, but this study focused on strengthening the person’s defense against that infection. 

Naqvi A, Hasturk H, Mu L, et al: Docosahexaenoic acid and periodontitis in adults. Journal of Dental Research 2014;93:767-773.

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