Fish Oil – Do’s and Don’ts

IMPORTANT TO NOTE:
The grams you take of fish oil is NOT the dosage. The dosage is how much EPA and DHA you are to take.  Will explain below.

Here’s some general Do’s and Dont’s

Do’s:

  • Take a high quality fish oil. No matter your diet, fish oil is one supplement we all benefit from. Typically, my advice on supplements is “don’t bother until you get your diet in order”. However, fish oil, along with a few others things like Vitamin D, is practically impossible to get from whole food. Even from eating Paleo, there are some things you will not get enough of.
  • Take enough. A little is not better than none at all. Proper dosage will be covered below

Don’ts:

  • Take any general fish oil from John Little, Watsons, dare i say it – GNC. It’s crap if it comes from these places. Period.

Let’s take a closer look…

Supplement Facts:
Serving Size: 1 Softgel

Each Softgel Contains – % Daily Value:
Calories 10 (Calories from Fat 10),
Total Fat 1 g – 2%*,
Saturated Fat 0.5 g – 3%*,
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.5 g – **,
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g – **,
Cholesterol 10 mg – 3%,
Natural Fish Oil Concentrate 1000 mg,
Omega 3 Fatty Acids (EPA/DHA and other Omega 3) 300 mg – **.

Ingredients:
Fish Oil Concentrate, Gelatin, Glycerin, Water, Tocopherol.
Contains: Fish (Anchovy, Sardine) and Soy.

In one capsule of this particular Fish Oil, there is 1,000mg of total content. The important stuff, EPA and DHA, makes up less than 300mg of that 1,000mg. It’s less because, they have generously included “other Omega 3s” in the make up of their fine product. So what is the remaining 700mg made of? The ingredients states “Fish Oil Concentrate, Gelatin, Glycerin, Water, Tocopherol.

Fish Oil Concentrate is nonsense. Technically still fish oil except that it’s the stuff you get when you squeeze the juices from a fish’s whatever left.

Gelatin is what the capsule is made of.

Water? It’s just filler… something to fill up the capsule.

Glycerin is a carbohydrate with a low index. It’s used as a preservative. Again, it’s not needed in a fish oil.

Tocopherol is alpha-Tocopherol, a synthetic Vitamin E. Most fish oils contain Vitamin E from this source to help keep the oil fresh. It’s a preservative.

The product contains fish and soy. The fish are anchovies and sardines. They are cheap at the grocery store and so is this fish oil for a reason. In everything, you get what you pay for. Higher quality fish oils are made from mackerel and cod. And Soy? Don’t consume soy. That’s a topic for another day.

Read about the lawsuit filed against the manufacturers of cheap fish oil here and here.

So I repeat – here’s the catch with the dosage. The grams you take of fish oil is NOT the dosage. The dosage is how much EPA and DHA you are to take. Clear?

 

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