SNR #98: Lee Hamilton, PhD – Effect of Omega 3 on Muscle Mass & Metabolic Function

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SNR #98: Lee Hamilton, PhD – Effect of Omega 3 on Muscle Mass & Metabolic Function

Episode 98: Lee Hamilton, PhD, of the University of Stirling is on the show to discuss the impact of omega 3 fatty acids on muscle function & metabolic health via inflammation & insulin sensitivity. 

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Guest Bio

Lee Hamiton, PhD.


Lee Hamilton PhD. is a sports physiology researcher based at the University of Stirling.

Dr. Hamilton’s primary research goal is to understand the molecular basis of skeletal muscle plasticity (the ability to change depending upon environment). Muscle is a very plastic tissue with the ability to grow with extra loading and become more fatigue resistant with training. However, muscle will also waste with inactivity and loose metabolic flexibility with poor nutrition.

He is also interested in developing nutritional interventions to assist in maintaining glucose homeostasis in patients with Type 1 Diabetes.

 In this episode we discuss:

  • Why the metabolic function of muscle is so important
  • Data on omega 3 fatty acids and muscle function
  • Possible mechanisms of action: inflammation, insulin sensitivity, etc.
  • Ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 in the diet: Is there such thing as optimal?
  • Implications for high-fat diets
  • Marine sources vs. plant sources (EPA + DHA vs. ALA)
  • Incorporation of fatty acids into cell membrane
  • Practical effects on muscle hypertrophy

Links & Resources:

Click Here to Download Glossary Sheet

Follow Lee on Twitter

Nutrition and Exercise Sciences Journal Club

Jeromson et al., 2015 – Omega 3 Fatty Acids & Skeletal Muscle Health

Rodacki et al., 2012 – Fish-oil supplementation enhances the effects of strength training in elderly women

Smith et al., 2015 – Fish oil-derived n-3 PUFA therapy increases muscle mass and function in healthy older adults

Smith et al., 2011 – Dietary omega-3 fatty acid supplementation increases the rate of muscle protein synthesis in older adults: a randomized controlled trial

Vessby et al., 2001 – The KANWU Study

Frayn et al., 2002 – Substituting dietary saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat changes abdominal fat distribution and improves insulin sensitivity

Esposito et al., 2004 – Effect of a mediterranean-style diet on endothelial dysfunction and markers of vascular inflammation in the metabolic syndrome: a randomized trial

George Fodor – “Fishing” for the Origins of the “Eskimos and Heart Disease” Story: Facts or Wishful Thinking?


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