Fish Oils – How Much and Which One?
Q: How much fish oil should I take?
A: Our general recommendations are to aim for around 2-4 grams of EPA/DHA per day. However, if you eat lots of wild-caught salmon, grass-fed beef and other natural sources of omega-3 fatty acids, and generally avoid sources of omega-6 (like vegetable oils, factory-farmed meat, nuts and seeds), you may not need any fish oil supplementation at all.
Q. When should I increase the dosage?
A. If you’re diet isn’t too good, you’re overweight, you’re recovering from injury or illness then increase the factor in your calculation.
Q. What is the dosage calculator?
A. Generally we recommend you take between 0.5 – 1g EHA & DHA per every 10lbs of body weight. So, if you’re (an overweight) 200lbs you would need 20 X 0.75g in even amounts with food through each day.
Q: Are there any contraindications for taking fish oil?
A: Because fish oil capsules have an effect on reducing the stickiness of platelets, it is recommended that if you have any of the following conditions, that you see your physician to discuss whether you should take fish oil capsules:
-You have a bleeding tendency
-You are on blood thinning medications
-You are about to have surgery
Of course, before starting any new medication or supplement, it is always a smart idea to consult your physician, right?
Q: I’m pretty inflamed/sick/overweight. Can I take more than you recommend to jump-start results?
A: Hear us clearly – you can’t fish oil your way out of poor dietary choices, lack of sleep, over-training or any combination of the above. It’s of the utmost important that you get your dietary and lifestyle house in order! More fish oil is not better – and in some instances, can do more harm than good. So make better food choices, get to bed earlier, allow yourself more time to rest and recover and do your best to minimize stress – and don’t rely on any pill or supplement to fix your stuff.
Q: Where do Omega-3 fatty acids come from?
A: Omega-3 fatty acids are found in the green leaves of plants, like grass, phytoplankton, algae and seaweed. This is the food that OUR food is designed to eat, which makes grass-fed beef, pastured organic eggs, and most importantly, certain types of fish (wild-caught fish and fish lower on the food chain, like herring, anchovy, sardine and mackerel) are good, natural sources of omega-3′s. Unfortunately, due to poor meat quality, and over-consumption of fast foods, processed foods, and vegetable oils, most of our diets are lacking in these essential fatty acids (and overly rich in pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids).
Q: Why do I need EPA and DHA?
A: You only need a quick web search for this one, because there is a wealth of information on this subject. Fish oil is not a magic bullet, but there are an infinite number of well-documented benefits for a whole host of lifestyle diseases and conditions. The short answer is that EPA and DHA are specific types of polyunsatured omega-3 fatty acids. Your body cannot produce these fatty acids – you must get them from the food you eat, or via supplementation. EPA and DHA are natural anti-inflammatory agents, and as such, play a role in brain health, heart health, protection against cancer, Alzheimer’s and depression, improvement of skin conditions like psoriasis and acne, fetal brain development, inflammatory bowel disorders, and arthritis, to name a few.
Our typical diets are rich in another type of pro-inflammatory polyunsaturated fatty acid called omega-6. When our dietary intake of omega-6′s far exceeds our intake of omega-3′s, our bodies experience a wide range of negative consequences, all with the underlying cause of increased systemic inflammation. Minimizing dietary intake of omega-6 fatty acids, and supplementing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids, helps to reduce inflammation, and the wide range of downstream effects.
Q: Is there an ideal EPA to DHA ratio?
A: This isn’t particularly important – but a supplement in the general neighborhood of 1:1 would be a good find. DHA converts to EPA easier than vice versa, so if you had to choose, choose a high-DHA oil.
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