The following article features coverage from ACR 2017 in San Diego, California. Click here to read more of MPR‘s conference coverage.

Increased intake of omega-3 fatty acids was significantly associated with better sleep quality and reduced depressive symptoms among lupus patients.

While some smaller studies have shown a link between reduced lupus disease activity and omega-3 intake, the intent of this study was to examine patient-reported outcomes. Baseline data on dietary omega fatty acid intake was collected from patients in the Michigan Lupus Epidemiology & Surveillance (MILES) program. The patient-reported outcome (PRO) data was garnered using questions from the Systemic Lupus Activity Questionnaire (SLAQ), RAND 36 Healthy Survey, Fibromyalgia (FM) Scale, PROMIS Sleep Disturbance (short form 8b) and PROMIS Depression. 

Related Articles

A total of 462 patients with lupus erythematosus (SLE) completed the questionnaires. The study found that increased ratios of omega-6 to omega-3 in the respondent’s diet was associated with more SLE disease activity, while greater intake of omega-3 fatty acids was significantly tied to better sleep and decreases in depressive symptoms as well as the presence of comorbid fibromylgia.

The authors of the study acknowledged how Western diets are often much higher in omega-6, an inflammatory fatty acid. “Eating more foods that are high in omega-3 and avoiding a lot of foods that are high in omega-6 could be a low-toxicity intervention that is easily available for SLE patients to help address these symptoms,” said Prae Charoenwoodhipong, MS, co-author of the study.

The full research was presented at the ACR/ARHP annual meeting being held in San Diego.

Visit MPR’s conference section for continuous coverage from ACR 2017.

For more information visit