Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) is one of several omega-3 fatty acids used by the body. It is found in cold water fatty fish, such as salmon. It is also found in fish oil supplements, along with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
Omega-3 fatty acids are part of a healthy diet that helps lower risk of heart disease. Getting more EPA in your diet has positive effects on coronary heart disease, high triglycerides (fats in the blood), high blood pressure, and inflammation.
Most people in the Western world do not get enough omega-3 fatty acids in their diet.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) is used for cystic fibrosis, intrauterine growth retardation, treating depression, pregnancy-induced hypertension in high-risk pregnancies, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), coronary artery disease, schizophrenia, personality disorder, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes.
In combination, EPA is used with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in fish oil preparations for a variety of conditions, including preventing and reversing heart disease, decreasing ectopic ventricular beats, asthma, cancer, dysmenorrhea, menopause, hay fever, lung diseases, lupus erythematosus, lupus nephritis, and IgA nephropathy. They are also used in combination for migraine headache prophylaxis in adolescents, atopic dermatitis, Behcet’s syndrome, hyperlipidemia, hypertension, psoriasis, Raynaud’s syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis. EPA is also used in combination with RNA and L-arginine in the perioperative period to reduce infections, improve wound healing, and shorten recovery time.