Fish oil is undoubtedly something you’ve heard of, and you may have seen bottles of it in your local supermarket’s pharmacy section or a health food store. Fish oil gets a lot of positive reviews for being one of the best supplements you can take to improve your health, but is there really truth to it? Is fish oil really as good as everyone claims it to be?
More Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Fish oil (and fish itself) is one of the best sources of omega 3 fatty acids. Fatty acids are used by the body on a cellular level, as most of the membranes in any particular cell store them. The cell membranes that work with fatty acids have two functions – to gather nutrients and to excrete waste. Without enough fatty acids to maintain the structure and integrity of the cell membranes, they cannot perform their functions as well.
Needless to say, it’s important that we take in an adequate amount of omega 3 fatty acids in our diets, but that is often difficult to do given the types of diets most people eat nowadays. With processed foods and fast foods making up the majority of our meals (and you can pretty much count out school lunches as being healthy for your kids), we’re just not getting enough of what we need for our bodies to function properly. Eating fresh, fatty fish about three times a week is the best way to get omega 3’s, but that’s not always possible. Most people do well to eat fresh fish once or twice a week, if even that. There are also a great deal of people who dislike fish and don’t incorporate it at all into their diets.
Fish oil supplements, however, are an excellent way to help make up for the lack of omega 3 fatty acids in our diets.
Fish Oil Reduces The Risk Of Disease
Fish oil supplements have been proven to reduce the risk of many diseases in the body, including cognitive diseases and cardiac problems. DHA, one of the omega 3 fatty acids, is a component found in high quantities in the human brain. Fish oil has been shown to reduce cognitive diseases like depression, anxiety, Alzheimer’s disease, and ADHD. While there is no hard evidence to show how fish oil is linked to the reduction of cognitive diseases like these, it is believed that because the brain is comprised largely of DHA and fish oil contains a high amount of DHA, that the brain benefits greatly from a fish oil supplement.
The cardiac system also greatly benefits from the nutrients found within fish oil. Fish oil has been shown to reduce inflammation and improve circulation. Both of these positive effects will benefit the heart and circulatory system, reducing the risk of heart attacks and stroke. Fish oil has also been known to reduce blood pressure and is recognized by the American Heart Association to be a beneficial supplement for both men and women with or without heart problems.
In addition to its many great cardiovascular and cognitive benefits, newer research shows that fish oil helps the body regulate insulin levels much more efficiently. This is excellent news for type II diabetics, who can often struggle maintaining their blood sugar levels with and without blood sugar medication.
What Are You Waiting For?
Fish oil is definitely something most people can benefit from, and if you’re not eating enough fresh, fatty fish on a weekly basis, you might be interested in adding a fish oil supplement to your diet. It will not only make marked improvements to your overall health, but you’ll also simply feel better. Who doesn’t want to feel better?
However, don’t go grab the largest, cheapest bottle of fish oil at the pharmacy or health food store just yet. It’s important to discuss the addition of any supplements to your diet with your doctor first. Although it is unlikely, your doctor may have a good reason for recommending that you don’t take fish oil – as is sometimes the case with patients who are on blood thinners or have other chronic diseases. Discuss with your doctor whether fish oil is something you personally can benefit from, and if so, what brand he or she recommends. Not all fish oils are made alike – some of the cheaper fish oils do not contain as many nutrients as other brands, and aren’t made from high quality fish. Some of the better brands of fish oil have a low odor, so you do not constantly smell like fish!
With your doctor’s blessing, you can enjoy the many health benefits that fish oil has to offer. It can be an excellent addition to your diet, and can improve your health and energy levels. Enjoy taking another positive step towards bettering yourself!