Omega 3 fish oil is an essential fatty acid that can be found in high-oil content fish or simply oily fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel. It consists of eicosapentanoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Omega 3 fish oil can also be obtained by supplementation. However, too little or too much intake of omega 3 fish oil does not provide any health benefit, and may even cause harm to your health.
It is generally recommended to have an intake of EPA plus DHA of about 0.3 to 0.5 g per day. Three 1 g fish oil supplements per day are equivalent to about 1 g of omega 3 fish oil. Note, however, that you might experience adverse effects in taking fish oil supplements, which include gastrointestinal manifestations (such as nausea, bad breath, burping, heartburn and loose stools), rashes and nosebleeds. Regular intake of this natural substance is good for you because it has many health benefits, which include the four listed here. Studies about omega 3 fish oil are continually being done to explore its great effects on health.
1. Protects the Heart
Evidence from research studies showed that omega 3 fish oil significantly decreases morbidity and mortality from heart disease. It can slow down the progression of atherosclerosis, a condition wherein muscles of the blood vessels that supply oxygen throughout your body thicken due to fat deposition, by lowering your triglyceride levels by 20 to 50 percent. It helps in regulating blood pressure, and in decreasing the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
Ironically, high dosage intake of fish oil can cause stroke and prevent blood clotting, causing bleeding. It might also weaken the immune system, which is a major concern if you are immunocompromised or elderly. You should take great care in administering the right dosage of fish oil supplements. While concerns about mercury contamination of fish meats are being raised, omega 3 fish oil intake may not be a problem, because fish oil supplements do not contain mercury.
2. Prevents Inflammation
Omega 3 fish oil has been found to be effective in reducing the clinical symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, an inflammatory disease in which the synovial joints are affected. The reduction in inflammation is due to resolvin, an anti-inflammatory compound produced from EPA.
3. Beneficial during Pregnancy
This fish oil has shown potential benefits in preventing pre-term labor during pregnancy, and in improving brain wiring and eyesight development for infants. There are now omega 3 fatty acid milk formulas available for infants whose mothers are unable to breastfeed, although breast milk is still the superior food for infants.
4. Prevents Dementia, Cognitive Deficits and Cancer
Omega 3 fish oil has been found in some studies to have a role in preventing cognitive decline and cancer. It may also be effective against the development of attention deficit hypersensitivity disorder in children. This natural substance was also found to be effective in preventing osteoporosis, depression, psoriasis and asthma.