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What Is Fish Oil And How Can It Help You Become Healthier?

Food is the source of all health. The type of food you eat will determine how healthy you are, and more importantly — how healthy you’ll be in the future. As it turns out, food is much more than just fuel we need to keep alive. It is also a source of very important nutrients, all of which impact how each of our individual organs behaves. 

Speaking of important nutrients, fish oil, or more specifically the Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil, have proven to be one of the more important nutrients out there. Here’s why. 


Fish Oil Explained 

Fish has always been an important part of nutrition for humans. Historically settling near rivers and seas, mankind has enjoyed the perks of fishing for millennia. Even though early humans lacked the technology and knowledge to understand why fish is an important food staple, they’ve had a hunch to implement it into their diet. 

Today, we know that fish is one of the healthiest types of food you can eat. The general recommendation is to consume fish at least once or twice per week. However, that isn’t practical for everybody. Some people simply don’t like the taste of fish while others may not be able to find the kind of fish they like in sufficient quantities. This is where fish oil comes in.

Fish oil is a supplement derived from certain types of fish, like tuna or sardines, that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. The oil is extracted and most commonly refined into little gel caps. Nutritionists’ advice found at argues that supplementation of Omega-3 fatty acids through fish oil gel caps is a great way of ingesting the required amount of this invaluable nutrient if fresh fish isn’t available. Plus, gel caps make taking the recommended daily dose easy. 


Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids 

Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of healthy, unsaturated fats that our bodies need in order to perform a number of important functions. This is a family of nutrients that humans can’t produce on their own, meaning that you have to source it through food. Contrary to popular belief, fish isn’t the only source of Omega-3 fatty acids. You can also find a form of Omega-3 in various nuts and other plants. 

However, that type of Omega-3 is more difficult to convert into something that our organism can use. Generally speaking, the docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid, the Omega-3 types of fatty acids found in fish, are much easier to digest, which is why fish oil is so important for nutrition. 


Benefits of Fish Oil 

The list of benefits that fish oil brings to the table is massive but also incomplete. Research is still being conducted on the effects of Omega-3 fatty acids and how they impact our bodies. That being said, what we know is enough to conclude that fish oil has a tangible benefit for some of the most important organs in our bodies as well as our immune system. 


Cardiovascular Health 

Over the years of studying Omega-3 fatty acids, scientists have discovered that these important unsaturated fats have a positive impact on the human cardiovascular system. To gain some concrete data, a study was done on a group of Greenlandic people. The idea behind this study was to figure out what percentage of the group had experienced various heart diseases considering that an average Greenlander consumes a diet rich in Omega-3 fatty acids.

The results of the study have shown that this particular group of people experiences a significantly lower number of cardiac arrests, while the overall prevalence of cardiovascular diseases was noticeably lower as well. 

Scientists believe that fish oil lowers the number of triglycerides in the blood, which has a protective effect on cardiovascular health. Triglycerides are an important type of fat, but only up to a certain concentration. An excess amount of triglycerides in the blood is a known indicator of numerous heart conditions. 


Lower Cholesterol 

Another positive effect of fish oil is its effect on cholesterol. Namely, Omega-3 fatty acids have shown to be effective in lowering cholesterol, more specifically the bad type of cholesterol that is associated with the formation of plaque in veins and other blood vessels. 


Benefits of Fish Oil over Fresh Fish 

Ingesting Omega-3 fatty acids through food has proven to be a superior way of enjoying the benefits of this nutrient. However, there are several reasons why you should take the supplement route instead, especially if fresh fish isn’t always available in your area. 

Fish oil supplements lack one compound that is often found in fish — mercury. Although present in trace amounts, some fish have enough mercury that makes eating them frequently unsafe. Experts agree that you shouldn’t eat tuna more than 2-3 times per week, and only up to 5 ounces maximum. Other types of fish contain more mercury and should be eaten even less. 

On the other hand, fish oil contains no mercury at all. You can safely consume fish oil on a daily basis and enjoy all of the benefits it brings to the table. Furthermore, fish oil, much like other supplements, requires no preparation. You can consume it as-is and carry on with your day. 

The only thing to keep in mind is that we still don’t know whether fish oil has any negative effects on people who are allergic to seafood. It’s best to consult your doctor if you’re allergic to any kind of fish or other food extracted from the seas and oceans. It’s better to be safe than sorry when allergies are in play. 


Fish Oil Supplementation 

Fish oil supplements vary in quality. Unfortunately, not all are made to meet the minimum standards that govern the content and source of ingredients used. It’s imperative that you look for proven manufacturers who have a positive track record and are known to deliver a quality product. Luckily for us, there are many reliable sources of fish oil online. 

Still, make sure to do your due diligence before ordering. We hope that this short guide on fish oil was helpful in showcasing some of the positive effects this supplement has on human health. There’s a reason why fish oil is one of the most popular supplements in use today.


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