When you think about fish oil, the first thing you’d imagine is good heart health. In many ways, the association holds a lot of truth.
In one university research, deficiency in omega-3 fatty acid ranks as one of the top ten death causes among Americans. This particular deficiency is said to have claimed almost ten thousand lives every year. This is probably because Americans lack fish oil in their diet.
Fish Oil – What is it about?
The essential fatty acids omega-3 that most people lack are found in none other than fish oil. Taken from its name, fish oil is extracted from the tissues of fish that are generally oily, living in cold water and are fat in nature.
The concentrated source of omega-3 fatty acids is fish oil. Although our bodies produce natural fats, omega-3 fatty acids is an essential fat needed by the body to survive. Some of the fish that has high omega-3 fatty acids content include mackerel, wild salmon, white fish, sardines, herring, and anchovies.
The fish oil that we need is generally obtained by taking fish oil supplements or by eating fresh fish. The two constituents of omega-3 fatty acids that are necessary for our health are eicosapentaenoic acid or EPA and Docosahexaenoic acid or DHA.
FDA has also approved fish oil to decrease levels of triglycerides and is generally good for boosting heart health and our circulatory system. Fish oil has been linked with preventing stroke or heart diseases on patients, clear arteries that are blocked and lower blood pressure after heart surgery.
Fish oil is also known to improve kidney health and boost brain health as well. That is why they say that taking fish oil is good for the mind and helps in retaining memory.
So, what exactly does fish oil do and why do we need it for our health? Below are seven reasons why we need to include fish oil in our diet.
1. Fish oil is good for the heart
Several studies have proved an adequate amount of fish oil consumed can lower the risk of getting heart diseases. This includes stroke as well as high blood pressure. This is because of its ability to help unclog arteries and remove plaque lining the walls of the arteries.
Triglyceride levels in the body will also decrease by 15 to 30% when taking fish oil. Moreover, fish oil can also increase HDL or known as “good cholesterol.”
2. Fish oil can help in treating specific mental disorders and help boost brain power
There are also studies that claim taking fish oil supplements can prevent or lower the onset of mental disorders and can significantly improve mental health. This is because our brain is made up of 60% fat, and the omega-3 fatty acids are essential for the brain’s normal function.
Not only that but taking fish oil can also significantly improve our brain’s health and help retain memory. This is why students or individuals taking strenuous exams are advised to take fish oil supplements.
3. Fish oil can help improve fertility and balance out hormones
Some studies have recently shown that consuming fish oil can help with the improvement of fertility for both women and men. DHA is known to help in improving sperm health and increase mobility.
Moreover, fish oil can also help with fertility in women through reducing inflammation and balancing hormones while regulating fertility cycles. This means that taking fish oil can be beneficial for women who have problems conceiving and have irregular fertility cycles. Fish oil has also been found to be an effective treatment for fertility problems like Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) as well as endometriosis.
Fish oil is also one of the supplements that are encouraged for pregnant women to take during their pregnancy. This is because sufficient amounts of EPA and DHA can be passed on to the baby resulting in the healthy development of the fetus.
4. Fish oil can aid in weight loss and obesity
Since fish oil can lower bad cholesterol and promote cholesterol, chances of losing weight are high. Also, fish oil is considered healthier than other oils. Fish oil added into the diet along with exercise is a good combination for people who want to lose those extra pounds.
5. Fish oil can lower inflammation and prevent inflammatory diseases
When a body is trying to fight infection caused by bacteria and viruses, the result is inflammation. However, if not treated inflammation can cause a lot of complications to the body. The good news is that fish oil contains anti-inflammatory properties that can significantly improve our immune system.
Aside from that, taking fish oil can lower pain in joints leading to problems like arthritis.
6. Fish oil can make our skin look healthy
It is a known fact that the largest organ in our body is our skin and that it is made up of plenty of omega-3 fatty acids. When we take fish oil, we increase our chances of achieving good skin and lower problems like dermatitis and psoriasis. Moreover, fish oil can significantly improve the health of our hair as well.
7. Fish oil can help with preventing problems relating to allergic reactions
When there is a swelling in our lungs causing shortness of breath, the condition is called asthma. Asthma is considered a chronic allergy reaction. Fish oil can lower the risks of asthma as well as other allergic reactions.
How much fish oil is considered healthy and safe?
Although taking fish oil can have plenty of benefits, it is also important to note that consuming too much can also cause health risks. This is because some fish may contain higher mercury levels than others. When there is excess mercury in the body, it can lead to severe health problems and complications. Not only that, too much mercury can make symptoms of health problems worse.
The dosage recommendations of fish oil would depend largely on a person’s health and age. According to the World Health Organization, an ideal dosage of fish oil intake would be 0.2 to 0.5 grams with EPA and DHA. Make sure also that the kind of fish oil supplementation you are taking be kept in areas that are bright and hot as they will go bad easily. Storing them in the refrigerator would be ideal. Fish oil can easily be purchased over-the-counter. There are also some recommendations that you can find and buy online.
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