You may have used or heard about Omega-3 supplements at a given point in life. Fish oil supplements contain omega-3 fatty acids that impact your health positively. In this article, we will answer the question, ‘What is the best fish oil supplement?’ Your doctor can prescribe fish oil, or you may purchase them over the counter. People may want to buy fish oil supplements over the counter but lack a hint of a good brand’s features.
What fish oil contains
Fish oil contains fatty acids called Long Chain Omega 3 Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Your body cannot synthesize these amino acids on its own. Amino acids that the body cannot produce on their own are called essential amino acids. The specific names for fatty acids found in fish oil include (Eicosapentaenoic acid) EPA and (Docosahexaenoic acid) DHA. Fish oil is obviously extracted from marine fatty fish like sardines, mackerel, anchovy, herring, salmon, and tuna. The fatter the fish, the more omega-three fats it contains. We can get fish oil by eating fish; however, it will require us to consume abnormally huge amounts of fish in order to meet our body requirements. Commercial fish oils are synthesized in order to meet our dietary and health needs. We may ask ourselves; what is the best fish oil supplement in the market?
Forms of fish oil supplements
Fish oil supplements may be found in the form of an ethyl/methyl ester or a triglyceride. Brands that have the methyl/ethyl ester form are usually more concentrated. Esterified fish oils may reduce the number of capsules you may need to achieve the recommended dose per day. There is a reduced pill burden advantage accompanied by methyl/ethyl ester-based fish oils. However, it is said that our bodies absorb triglyceride-based fish oil better than esterified fish oils.
There are suggestions that DHA may have benefits in relieving one’s blood pressure, while EPA is more suitable for people who want to decrease the triglyceride levels in their bodies. Therefore, it is important that you examine the proportions of EPA: DHA as per the requirement of your body.
Processing fish oil supplement
In order to determine the best fish oil supplement, it is necessary to look into the processing of the fish oil supplement. Manufacturers may make their fish oils either from fish liver or extract oil from the entire body of the fish. You should go for supplements that are made from the entire fish body since they have higher levels of fish oils than ones extracted from fish liver.
The best fish oil supplements are packed in capsules for stability and ease consumption. Fish oils get oxidized easily when exposed to the open air; this occurs mostly at the manufacturing level and therefore is beyond our control. Lack of the fishy smell after you have taken a fish oil supplement can be an indicator that it is unstable and therefore has undergone oxidation, maybe during the production process or in the store. Oxidized fish oil supplements may be harmful to your health and may not give the desired health results. Sometimes, the content label suggested in the package may not match the exact quantity of fish oil in the specific package because of oxidation. Hence oxidation of fish oil lowers the levels of EPA and DHA contents in fish oil that may be important for you. Oxidized fish oil may have side effects like tissue toxicity, reduce one’s growth rate, and promote heart disease.
Uses of fish oil
Several health conditions may compel your doctor to recommend fish oils. Some of the common uses of fish oils include lowering the risk of cardiac disease, rheumatoid arthritis, blood pressure. Fish oil improves brain development for your babies. Your doctor may also prescribe fish if your pregnancy is at risk. People suffering from diabetes, renal failure, and Crohn’s syndrome are also given fish oil. It may be used to lower triglyceride levels at elevated doses as well.
Precautions for using fish oil
We have discussed that fish oil supplements are normally sourced from fat marine fish, including the best fish oil supplement. Some fish may contain harmful substances like mercury. In case the manufacture makes fish oil from fish having large amounts of mercury, the supplement is considered to pose a health danger to you. If you are allergic to fish, it is advisable that you simply avoid taking fish oil supplements. Taking fish oil may make you have nausea if you cannot tolerate the fishy smell after swallowing.
Addressing the controversies
Companies that manufacture fish oil supplements are always cautious about the sources of fish they use to make commercial fish oil. Regulatory guidelines are followed to ensure that we are supplied with fish oil that is free of contaminants. People who have an allergy to fish products may go for another omega three sources called Alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) that is obtained from plant sources. ALA is not a complete substitute for DHA and EPA. Your body uses ALA to increase calories and to synthesize DHA to a smaller extent. People who cannot tolerate fish burps may choose a flavored brand which may help in masking the fishy smell.
5 of the best fish oil supplements
The brands of fish oil supplements that you may find in stores include Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega SoftGels, Omega XL, Viva Naturals Fish Omega 3 Fish Oil, Optimum Nutrition Omega 3 Fish Oil and Carlson – The Very Finest Fish Oil, 700 mg Omega-3s. They are all discussed below.
This brand has relatively higher DHA and EPA contents accounting for 79% of the fish oil. Gives you up to thrice the required daily dose of fish oil in one intake. It is triglyceride based. Besides, it has a high concentration that your body may require. The manufacturer uses whole fish like sardine, mackerel anchovy to make the fish oil. The product has vitamin E to minimize oxidation. Manufacturer guarantees that the product is free from contaminants.
It has a high concentration of DHA and EPA up to 70%. It comes in capsule form and has 90 capsules.
This supplement contains about 30 fatty acids, including DHA and EPA. If you have painful joints, you can go for Omega XL. The manufacturer extracts the ingredients from the green-lipped mussel, unlike other companies that source from sea fish. In addition, it comes in easy to swallow gel capsules. It is also rich in chondroitin that may help you have reduced joint pains.
This brand has the advantage of an enteric coating that helps you not to feel the fishy aftertaste. A soft gel has 300mg of fish oil with 240 soft gels.
It comes in the form of capsules with 240 soft gels. The manufacturing laboratory is registered by the Food and Drug Administration hence guarantees quality to this product. It also has Vitamin, which reduces the chances of oxidation. You will get 700mg of fish oil in one capsule.
Verdict on the best fish oil supplement
I highly recommend that you use Viva Naturals Fish Omega 3 Fish Oil due to the fact that it has high concentrations of fish oil. This has the benefit of a reduced pill burden, and therefore you will find it convenient to stick to the recommended dose. As stated, the brand is made from whole fish, which also maximizes the concentration of fish oil and further reduces pill burden. It is triglyceride-based, in which our bodies may have maximum absorption upon uptake. Finally, the Viva naturals brand has vitamin E that maintains the stability of the fish oil and has no contaminants, thus assuring us of the quality.