Omega-6 fatty acids: Can they cause heart disease?

content provided by

Omega-6 fatty acids: Can they cause heart disease?


What are omega-6 fatty acids? Can eating omega-6 fatty acids cause heart disease?

No name
No state given


Omega-6 fatty acids are a type of unsaturated fat found in vegetable oils, nuts and seeds. When eaten in moderation and in place of the saturated fats found in meats and dairy products, omega-6 fatty acids can actually be good for your heart and brain.

There had been some controversy regarding omega-6 fatty acids. Some researchers had believed that omega-6 fatty acids metabolize in your body to become a type of fatty acid that can cause the lining of your arteries to become inflamed and damaged. That damage causes narrowing in your arteries, which can lead to heart disease.

However, the American Heart Association (AHA) has said that this view is incorrect. The AHA recommends that people eat between 5 and 10 percent of their daily calories from omega-6 fatty acids. Most people already eat this amount of omega-6 fatty acids. If you're concerned about the amount of omega-6 fatty acids you're eating, talk to your doctor about replacing some of the saturated fats in your diet with healthier options.

Last Updated: 2011-10-21
© 1998-2016 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). All rights reserved. A single copy of these materials may be reprinted for noncommercial personal use only. "Mayo," "Mayo Clinic," "," "Mayo Clinic Health Information," "Reliable information for a healthier life" and the triple-shield Mayo logo are trademarks of Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research.

Terms and conditions of use


Bookmark and Share   E-Mail Page   Printer Friendly Version