Friday, September 29, 2023
Mitochondrial Health

Chris McGlory, PhD, on the Anabolic Potential of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Dr. Chris McGlory is an assistant professor at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Known for his work in the field of muscle physiology and aging, Dr. McGlory’s research focuses on elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying muscle protein synthesis and degradation, with a particular emphasis on the roles that omega-3 fatty acids play in maintaining muscle health in older adults.

Show notes and transcript:
Chris McGlory – Google Scholar:

Apple Podcasts:

00:00:00 – Introduction
00:07:18 – Interview start
00:14:31 – Why atrophy is worse for the old than the young
00:16:50 – Can dietary protein prevent atrophy?
00:19:03 – Why reduced movement can insidiously mimic short-term immobilization
00:24:19 – The disability threshold — when atrophy may actually be deadly
00:26:26 – Does high-dose omega-3 hold the key to fighting atrophy? (5g/day)
00:29:47 – Increasing the muscle protein synthetic response with omega-3
00:30:02 – Does omega-3 improve our response to low protein?
00:32:47 – The potential role of LAT1 upregulation in atrophy resistance
00:36:58 – Who benefits most from the anti-catabolic effects of omega-3?
00:43:04 – Why omega-3 must be preloaded for 4 to 6 weeks
00:45:48 – Why omega-3 trials have conflicting results
00:49:15 – Why muscle mass and strength are imperfectly correlated
00:51:44 – Does omega-3 enhance strength?
00:54:10 – Sex differences in gaining mass and strength
00:56:14 – Improvements in gait speed and balance
00:57:17 – How to act on mixed evidence — and should we?
00:59:45 – Why omega-3 may reduce frailty in old age
01:01:16 – Does high-dose omega-3 enhance anabolic potential?
01:03:27 – Why the anabolic mechanisms are counterintuitive
01:04:56 – Are the drivers of disuse atrophy intracellular or extracellular in nature?
01:09:09 – Do omega-3s boost tired, dysfunctional mitochondria?
01:12:35 – Increasing metabolic rate by up to 27% — an effect of 3g/day omega-3 supplementation?
01:15:39 – Omega-3 dosage (optimal vs. normal dietary intake)
01:16:44 – Why we need an “omega-3 index” for muscle
01:18:26 – Anabolic signaling pathways — Does omega-3 enhance mTOR in muscle?
01:20:20 – Why the inflammation from cancer wastes muscle
01:21:48 – Cancer cachexia
01:22:06 – Does omega-3 reduce atrophy from cancer cachexia?
01:23:38 – Ongoing clinical trials
01:27:04 – Does aerobic exercise impede “gains?” (chronic interference effect)
01:29:07 – Why aerobic exercise may enhance hypertrophy from resistance exercise


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20 thoughts on “Chris McGlory, PhD, on the Anabolic Potential of Omega-3 Fatty Acids
  1. Learn more about omega-3…
    Rhonda shares tips on selecting an omega-3 supplement in her Q&A episode #33:

    Omega-3 may reduce risk of premature death

    #68 Dr. Bill Harris on the Omega-3 Index, Increasing Omega-3 to Improve Longevity & Heart Disease Risk

    The Highest Omega-3 Dose Ever Studied (25 grams per day)

    Is omega-3 a longevity compound?

    Dr. Bill Harris comments on omega-3 and atrial fibrillation

    Drs. Bill Harris and Rhonda Patrick comment on omega-3 prostate cancer study SELECT trial

  2. Is omega 3 consumption cumulative or do you have to take it daily…so for instance, I eat 5 to 6 cans of sardines in one day…giving me 13 or more grams of omega 3…is that 2 and a half days worth (at 5g per day) or do I need my 5g again the next day?

  3. Great interview as always! Ive got a question though. What about arachidonic acid. I somewhere read that with a high dose Omega 3 supplementation your arachidonic acid levels will drop low. I wonder if this also has clinical relevance for example for vegans who naturally might have a very low arachidonic acid supply. Also interesting that there is talk about how arachidonic acid supplementation might stimulate muscle protein synthesis (I'm a layman, no guarantee anything about what i just said is true). Maybe you can shed some light on that topic in the future. Thank you!

  4. I come from one of those families that are waif like. Doesn't matter how much physical effort is done, the muscles don't bulk up. I've always thought there was a fatty acid metabolism defect. So this makes sense to me.

  5. Years back I. Was eating sardines or salmon 4 days per week while taking a liquid O’3 supplement of 3+g per day. When tested it showed a suppressed immune system.. My body wasn’t producing enough GLA which could be genetic.

  6. Yes, you can get it from food! My whole family eats fish every day. Always have. Just grab a can of wild sockeye salmon and eat 1/3 can per day. Low mercury and toxins.

  7. Hello, Rhonda. I appreciate your educational video. I was recently diagnosed with myopathy; do you believe a large dose of omega-3 fish oil could help?

  8. This should be a personal message vs a post, but I as I was watching this, I thought, wow, Dr. Patrick looks her age today (in this clip). I wonder why… Then I just saw another video recorded 8 years ago, and I realized Dr. Patrick looks almost exactly same now as she did 8 years ago. As a matter of fact, she looks better now than 8 years ago. So while she looks amazing for her age usually, I’m now thinking it has more to do with lighting on this video. 😀 Goes to show what she’s passionate about works.

  9. How about algae based omega 3 DHA & EPA supplements which I take? I can't have fish. Omega 3 also from ground flaxseeds, walnuts, chia seeds etc daily. We do need alternatives from fish.

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