A Virginia teenager who was practically brain dead after a one-car collision emerged from a coma after receiving high-doses of fish oil.
After his parents finally convinced doctors to give the experimental treatment a try, 17-year-old Bobby Ghassemi received about 20 grams a day of fish oil through a feeding tube, a similar dosage to what was successfully administered to a West Virginia man with a devastating brain injury who who was the sole survivor of a mine disaster in 2006.
According to CNN, the teen began slowly emerging from his coma after two weeks on high-dose fish oil, and he was able to attend his high school graduation three months after the accident. He is still rehabbing three years later, but he has made significant progress. “His brain was still recovering, but with (Omega-3), it recovered much faster and in a shorter amount of time. His brain was damaged, and this was food for the brain,” his father said.
Dr. Michael Lewis, who recommended the high-dose fish oil regimen to the family, explained that “in my opinion, and this is pure speculation, he never would have come out of a coma if it hadn’t been for the use of Omega-3s to allow that natural healing process to occur.”
About 30 percent of the human brain consists of Omega-3 fatty acids. According to Dr. Lewis, “high doses of Omega-3 fatty acids, since they mirror what is already in the brain, could facilitate the brain’s own natural healing process.”
Thus far, most of the Omega-3 clinical studies that have analyzed its effects on brain trauma involved animals, so large-scale clinical studies will be needed to verify fish oil’s potential as a treatment for human brain damage.
Previous studies have suggested that fish oil may protect individuals from Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. For ordinary consumption, salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies, and sardines are among the cold water oily fish sources of Omega-3 fatty acids. Many holistic-oriented consumers also take fish oil supplements for both brain and heart health.