is so much information and claims made regarding fish oil that it can be
confusing on why you would take a fish oil supplement. Let us help break it
Fish oil has a heap of benefits, but there is the most evidence to show
influence on heart health, bone health, and brain health. We have used 3
reliable reports as sources for this article: The U.S. National Institute of
Health, The Mayo Clinic, and the University of Maryland report because there is
so much inconsistent information out there. (source links below)
The way to consume
fish oil is either from eating fish or by taking supplements. Fish that are
especially rich in the beneficial oils known as omega-3 fatty acids include
mackerel, tuna, salmon, sturgeon, mullet, bluefish, anchovy, sardines, herring,
trout, and menhaden. As a rule of thumb, 1 gram of omega-3 fatty acids is found
in approximately 3.5 ounces of fish.
Heart Health– Fish Oil has many benefits to the
believe that fish oil can reduce triglyceride
levels by 20%-50% (or another report approximated 40%).
- Fish oil seems to reduce blood pressure in people with high
blood pressure or hypertension. The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil seem to aid
the expansion of blood vessels, which brings blood pressure down. An analysis of 17 clinical studies using fish oil supplements
found that taking 3 or more grams of fish oil daily may reduce blood pressure
in people with untreated hypertension.
- Fish oil seems to help prevent and treat the progress of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) in the coronary
arteries by slowing the development of plaque and blood clots, which
can clog arteries.
Fish oil may lower cholesterol by keeping it from being absorbed in the intestine. There is some evidence that using vitamin B12 along with fish oil might boost their ability to lower cholesterol.
- Evidence suggests that people who
have low levels of EPA and DHA may have a higher risk of coronary heart disease
and heart failure. Clinical trials suggest that omega-3 fatty acids may have
benefits in terms of reducing total and heart disease mortality (death). Daily
intake has been linked to a reduced risk of sudden heart failure.
The Mayo Clinic rates fish oil with a
A grade for treating high blood pressure, lowering triglycerides, and secondary
cardiovascular disease prevention. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish
(particularly fatty fish such as mackerel, lake trout, herring, sardines,
albacore tuna, and salmon) at least 2 times a week.
Bone Health - There is evidence that fish oil is
helpful for Osteroporosis and Rheumatoid arthritis.
- Osteroporosis- Taking fish oil alone or in
combination with calcium and evening primrose oil seems to slow bone loss rate and increase bone density at the thigh bone (femur)
and spine in elderly people with osteoporosis. Some studies suggest that omega-3 fatty acids may help
increase levels of calcium in the body and improve bone strength. Other studies suggest that people who don’t get enough of some essential fatty
acids (particularly EPA and gamma-linolenic acid
[GLA], an omega-6 fatty acid) are more likely to have bone loss than those with
normal levels of these fatty acids. In a study of women over 65 with
osteoporosis, those who took EPA and GLA supplements had less bone loss over 3
years than those who took placebo. Many of these women also experienced an
increase in bone density.
- Rheumatoid arthritis - The Mayo Clinic rated fish oil
an A grade for Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Many
studies report improvements in morning stiffness and joint tenderness with
regular intake of fish oil supplements for up to three months. Fish oil has
been found to have effects on the immune system and on fats in the blood in
people with rheumatoid arthritis. One
study suggests that people with Rheumatoid arthritis who take fish oil may be
able to lower their dose of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
However, fish oil does not appear to slow progression of RA, only to treat the
Brain Health - Omega-3
fatty acids are highly concentrated in the brain and appear to be important for
cognitive (brain memory and performance) and behavioural function.
- Studies show infants who do not get
enough omega-3 fatty acids from their mothers during pregnancy are at risk for
developing vision and nerve problems.
- A combination of fish oil (80%) and
evening primrose oil (20%) seems to improve reading, spelling, and behaviour
when given to children age 5-12 years with developmental coordination disorder.
- A number of studies show that reduced
intake of omega-3 fatty acids is associated with increased risk of age related
cognitive decline or dementia, including Alzheimer's disease. Scientists
believe the omega-3 fatty acid DHA is protective against Alzheimer's disease
Click Here to Go to our Fatty Acid/Fish Oil Selection