Taking fish oil is beneficial in many different ways. It is often recommended for patients with mental health concerns, cancer, heart problems, and a myriad of other conditions. Fish oil comes from the tissues of oily fish, particularly mackerel, lake trout, herring, tuna, salmon, and sardines. Secondary groups of fish that are healthy but have less omega-3 oil are halibut, river trout, catfish, cod, and snapper. Taking a fish oil supplement can deliver more benefits than eating fish alone.
Reduces Anxiety and Depression
Several studies have shown that people with anxiety and depression had a far lower intake of omega-3 fatty acids than those without those conditions. Adding this to the diet increases the number of serotonin — the “happy hormone” — receptors in a developing brain. For those treating anxiety, EPA omega-3 is a viable supplement. For growing children, choose DHA at the most effective dose of 2000mg per day, if your child’s health care provider approves. You may only feel the benefits after three weeks on the fish oil.
Helps Arthritis Symptoms
There have been extensive studies about the benefits fish oil has on inflammatory diseases. For people living with rheumatoid arthritis, fish oil can help reduce inflammation and stiffness. When you ingest the fish oil, the EPA and DHA block the inflammatory response by converting into anti-inflammatory chemicals, reducing the stiffness and swelling. Combining fish oil with olive oil may enhance the benefits. Fish oil capsules with at least 30 percent EPA and DHA seem to be the most effective. You may also opt to eat up to two servings of fatty fish a week, such as mackerel, salmon, cod, halibut, and tuna.
Studies show that low levels of omega-3 fatty acids increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, so it makes sense to eat fatty fish twice a week or take a supplement, particularly if you have other risk factors. It’s the essential fatty acids in the fish or fish oil that the brain needs to maintain optimal executive functions. These benefits help prevent brain atrophy in older Alzheimer’s patients and slow down cognitive decline in those with an early diagnosis. The studies were also important when testing people who did not have the disease and had no genetic risks of developing it. In these cases, those who took fish oil had less brain shrinkage than those not taking the oil.
Helps Prevent Cardiovascular Disease
The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil can improve heart function and lower the risk of systemic inflammation, known to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Fish oil can improve the survival rate after a heart attack. It can also improve the heart function of someone who has had a recent heart attack. Your health care provider can recommend a fish oil regimen that suits your specific needs.
Reduces Diabetes Complications
Adding fatty fish twice a week to a diet can lower the risk of diabetes-related complications. Fish oil protects the hippocampal cells and reduces oxidative stress, which plays a large role in the development of diabetes. It’s an easy thing to add another type of protein to your diet, and eating fish high in omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the symptoms of diabetes, or even reverse type 2 diabetes in some cases when used in conjunction with a weight-loss diet.
Mitigates the Effects of Eye Disorders
As far as eye health goes, fish oil is on top of the list for lowering the damage caused by macular degeneration in older patients. Mitigating the effects of age-related eye disorders is a huge benefit when taking fish oil. Research has linked the level of polyunsaturated fats in fish oil and fresh fish to reduced levels of cortical cataracts. Also, the high EPA and DHA levels the oil contains benefit those at risk for age-related macular degeneration. So if you have a hereditary eye condition, taking fish oil in mid-life can only help you in the long run. If you start taking it after diagnosis, it can work to slow the progression of the disease and lower the risk of complications.
Helps the Immune System
Fish oil contains a powerful antioxidant called astaxanthin. The combination of this substance and fatty acids in fish oil boosts the immune properties of both. For consumption, you can eat pink-hued fish and shellfish as part of your healthy eating plan or buy a fish oil supplement that specifically contains astaxanthin. It will improve the way your immune system functions and protect certain cells from free radical damage. A strong immune system can help you avoid falling victim to common respiratory viruses that spread through your community.
Improves Texture of Skin and Hair
Fish oil moisturizes and smoothes the skin from the inside out with its fat-soluble vitamins, reducing the appearance of wrinkles and aging skin. Studies have shown it reduces eczema symptoms, reduces symptoms in some cases of psoriasis, and reduces the sunburn response. You can find moisturizers that contain omega-3 fatty acids, but the best way is to take it orally and let it work internally, rather than applying it directly onto the skin. Fish oil supplements may also improve the shine and strength of weakened hair.
Low levels of DHA have been linked to fertility concerns. For men, DHA is vital to sperm creation. It’s a natural byproduct of omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil, so taking supplements can potentially improve fertility. Fish oil is beneficial for women’s fertility because it can help balance hormones, regulate cycles, and reduce inflammation. It can also help when coping with infertility-related conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and endometriosis.
Benefits a Healthy Pregnancy
Omega-3 fatty acids contain essential nutrients for both a baby and a mother. When pregnant, eating several servings of fish each week will reap the benefits for two people in one. Avoid mercury-based fish while pregnant. Speak with your obstetrician about taking fish oil supplements if you don’t like the taste or smell of fish. There are many benefits to the fetus’s development in the womb as well as the mother’s physical and mental condition during pregnancy.
May Prevent Some Cancers
Taking fish oil when fighting certain kinds of cancer can help make cancer drugs more effective. Colon cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and endometrial cancer have all been the subject of lengthy studies on the effects of fish oil. The conclusions indicate that the omega-3 inhibits malignant cell growth. Research shows a positive correlation between fish oil’s effects on the immune system and the body’s cancer-fighting abilities.
Helps Aid Weight Loss
Adding fish oil to a balanced diet and increased exercise in your day-to-day life can reduce body fat even more than diet and exercise alone. The combination of a healthy lifestyle and fish oil supplements means improved blood flow in the body, lower fat-storing triglycerides, and an increase in your HDL (good) cholesterol. Three to four grams of fish oil each day is enough to stimulate the fatty acids for energy production in adults; check with your health care provider for the best dose for you.
Improves ADHD Symptoms
There is evidence that omega-3 fatty acids can optimize brain function and boost the body’s synthesis of dopamine. Many doctors recommend children take a supplement as an efficient way to consume fish oil, but you should check with your child’s health care provider first. Fish oil boosts the cognitive function of the brain, which may help children with ADHD master impulse control and improve concentration.