A diet rich in fatty-fish may be the key to fighting childhood asthma, a new study has found.
The clinical trial, led by researchers from La Trobe University in Melbourne, has shown eating fish high in good-fats such as salmon, trout and sardines as part of a healthy diet can reduce the symptoms of asthma in children.
Seafood Industry Australia (SIA), the national peak-body representing the Australia seafood industry, welcomed study and called it a potential "easy and effective" treatment for asthma suffers.
"Childhood asthma is the most common respiratory disorder worldwide," SIA CEO Jane Lovell said.
"We know these species of fish are high in omega-3 fatty acids which have anti-inflammatory properties and have been shown to help in the reduction of symptoms for other inflammatory conditions like arthritis.
"This new research shows that following a diet which is high in oily-fish could be an easy, safe and effective way to reduce the symptoms of asthma in children which is fantastic news."
The study, published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, found children with asthma who followed a healthy Mediterranean diet enriched with fatty-fish showed improved lung function after a six month period.
The study, conducted in Greece, followed 64 children aged five to 12 with mild asthma. Half of the test group consumed two meals of cooked fatty-fish (of at least 150 grams) per week, while the other half followed their normal diet. After six months, those on the Mediterranean diet had significantly reduced their bronchial inflammation.
Lead researcher Maria Papamichael said the findings added to a growing body of evidence that a healthy diet, inclusive of seafood, could be a potential therapy for childhood asthma.
"Now we have evidence that it's... possible to manage asthma symptoms through healthy eating," she said in a press release.
"Our study shows eating fish just twice a week can significantly decrease lung inflammation in children with asthma."