Algal DHA omega-3 boosts reading capability in underperforming children

Daily supplementation of algal DHA omega-3 may boost a child’s reading ability and improve behaviour, research finds.

Published in the PloS journal, researchers from Oxford University’s Centre for Evidence-Based Intervention found DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) supplementation a “safe and effective way to improve reading and behaviour in healthy but underperforming children”.

The independent study was funded by health and nutrition giant DSM Nutritional Products and used the firm’s algal DHA omega-3 oil in the research.

Findings showed that supplementation has a robust impact in aiding ‘underperforming’ children – those with a reading ability two years behind the expected level (≤20th centile) and lower at ≤10th centile.

Children in the ≤20th centile sub-group taking DHA saw an 8 month improvement in reading age and those in the ≤10th centile group gained 1.9 months.

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