Over the past decade, many Canadians have turned to omega-3 fish oil supplements, which have benefits for healthy people and also those with moderate to serious medical health conditions.
The reasons for all the hype about taking fish oil is due to the body of evidence that it can help benefit our bodies in many ways.
Omega-3 fatty acids play important roles in brain function, healthy growth and development, and inflammation. Deficiencies have been linked to a variety of health problems, including cardiovascular disease, some cancers, mood disorders, arthritis, and more. Fish oil (whether you get it from whole food or supplement) has been promoted as an easy way to protect the heart, ease inflammation, improve mental health, and lengthen lifespan.
What Foods Contain Fish Oil?
Fish oil can be obtained from eating fish or by taking supplements. Fish that are especially rich in the beneficial oils known as omega-3 fatty acids include salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines, lake trout, and tuna. Cod liver, whale blubber, and seal blubber offer substantial Omega-3 Fatty acids too.
Some plants are rich in another type of omega-3 fatty acid, alpha-linolenic acid, which the body can convert to DHA and EPA. Good sources of these are flaxseeds, chia seeds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and canola oil.
Two of the most important omega-3 fatty acids contained in fish oil are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). The Canadian Medical Associations recommends that everyone eats fish (particularly fatty, cold-water fish) at least twice a week.
What Types of Medical Conditions It Help?
Fish Oil is most often used for conditions related to the heart and blood system. Some people use fish oil to lower blood pressure, triglycerides and cholesterol levels. Fish oil has also been used for preventing heart disease or stroke, as well as for clogged arteries, chest pain, irregular heartbeat, bypass surgery, heart failure, rapid heartbeat, preventing blood clots, and high blood pressure after a heart transplant.
Fish oil is also used to for many kidney-related problems including kidney disease, kidney failure, and kidney complications related to diabetes, cirrhosis, Berger's disease (IgA nephropathy), heart transplantation or using the drug called cyclosporine.
Fish Oil for Weight Loss?
The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil have various potential health benefits, one of which is aiding weight loss. More importantly, fish oil omega-3s may help you lose inches and shed body fat.
Fish oil is the best option for healthy weight loss. This healthy fat found in fatty fish is the richest natural source of omega-3 fatty acids. Researchers have found that fish oil can help reduce hunger and appetite. This effect may be particularly useful for those who are following weight loss diets, which sometimes lead to increased feelings of hunger. Another important consideration in any weight loss program is the ability to lose belly fat that is detrimental to your overall health. Studies have shown that fish oil supplementation may help you get rid of that stubborn belly fat.
So Many Benefits
Be sure to read the label when you buy a fish oil supplement for purity, concentration, form and sustainability; however, eating whole foods is almost always better than taking supplements.
From brain health to heart health, skin improvement, bone health, reduction in allergies and so much more, taking fish oil should become part of your daily diet.