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Can Omega 3 and Omega 7 relieve Dry Eyes?

Posted by Brady Bunch on

I recently wrote about dry eyes in my blog. As a result of this I got a number of enquiries on the benefits of omega 3 or omega 7 to relieve dry eyes. Hence I revisit this topic.

Omega 3 Oils

Studies indicate that a diet rich in Omega 3 oils can reduce the risk of developing dry eye and also ease symptoms. Omega 3 fatty acids are primarily found in oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines and pilchards. We should eat two portions of fish per week, one of them oily. Flaxseed oil which is also known as linseed oil is also a good source of omega 3. For people who do not eat sufficient fish oils, I recommend a fish oil supplement called MorEPA® as it contains the highest level of pure omega 3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) of any fish oil supplement.

Can Omega 7’s relieve dry eyes?

Omega-7 fatty acids help boost the immune system and (like omega 3) reduce inflammation. Their main benefits are their ability to reduce dryness in membranes of the body. I got introduced to Omega 7 in the last year by a pharmacist colleague of mine who mentioned that many of his patients found it helped relieve dry eyes. I recommended it to a few people suffering from Sjögren’s syndrome (an inflammatory condition that causes severe dry eyes) and they got a benefit of it. In Whelehans Pharmacy, we stock the PharmaNord brand of Omega 7 capsules. Omega-7 fatty acids are derived from berries of a shrub called sea buckthorn which originates in the Himalayas. It has long been used as part of traditional Chinese medicine.

Relieving Dry Eyes                                                                                                                               
One clinical study conducted on one hundred men and women aged 20 to 75 experiencing dry eye symptoms demonstrated the benefits of omega 7. For 12 weeks, half the participants took an omega 7 supplement. The group who took the omega 7 supplement experienced less redness and burning sensations than the group who took the placebo.

Omega 7 has produced positive results in studies of women with Sjögren’s syndrome. In one double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 24 women aged 35 to 66 took an omega 7 supplement or a placebo for 12 weeks. The omega 7 supplement gave relief to itch, pain, dryness and burning sensations in the mucosal tissues experienced by those with Sjögren’s syndrome. Omega 7 is not a cure all for dry eyes, however taking it as a supplement may give some relief. Supplements are not meant as a substitute for medical assessment and should not replace prescription medication.

Eamonn Brady is a pharmacist and the owner of Whelehans Pharmacy, Pearse St, Mullingar. If you have any health questions e-mail them to

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