Mental Health Home > Docosahexaenoic Acid Supplements

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which is found in fatty fish and other sources, is an omega-3 fatty acid. Because many people do not eat much fish -- and since omega-3 fatty acids, including docosahexaenoic acid, are recommended as part of a heart-healthy diet -- these supplements have become popular in recent years.
This supplement may be useful for people with high cholesterol, heart disease, and numerous other conditions. It may also be beneficial for pregnant and breastfeeding women. In fact, many prenatal supplements now contain docosahexaenoic acid.
Unlike most supplements, docosahexaenoic acid has been extensively studied for a variety of uses. However, many of these studies evaluated the supplement in combination with another omega-3 fatty acid, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), usually in the form of fish oil. It is not clear if DHA provides exactly the same benefits of fish oil or other DHA and EPA combinations.
(To learn more about this supplement, including what to expect in cases of overdose, click Docosahexaenoic Acid.)
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Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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