Fish oils are one of the most consumed dietary supplements. They are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and are important for your health. If you do not consume a lot of oily fish you may benefit from fish oil supplementation. Below, we will discuss the five health benefits of fish oils.
What is Fish Oil?
Fish oil is extracted from fish tissue. Fish oil can be sourced from many types of oily fish. The most common is herring, tuna, sardines, anchovies, and mackerel. The World Health Organization recommends 1-2 portions of fish per week because of the health benefits and protection from a numerous diseases.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are the main types of omega-3s in fish oil. EPA generally supports the neck down, such as heart health, immune support, and skin support. Further, it is a great anti-inflammatory. DHA benefits the neck up by supporting areas of brain, eye, and behavioral health.
The Western diet has replaced omega-3 fatty acids with omega-6s. On average, most Americans eat about 10 times more omega-6 fats than omega-3 fats. Too many omega-6 fatty acids raise your blood pressure, can lead to blood clots that can cause heart attack and stroke, and cause your body to retain water. Instead of eliminating omega-6s from your diet you may add more omega-3 fatty acids. Hence, bringing the two omegas into a better balance.
Five health benefits of fish oils are discussed below.
1. Heart Health and Fish Oils
Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. (1)
Individuals who consume more omega-3 fish oils have lower levels of heart disease. (2) In addition, consumption of fish oils has been shown to reduce plaquing of arteries, improve cholesterol levels by raising good cholesterol (HDL), reduce triglycerides, support glucose regulation, and reduce blood pressure. (3)
2. Fish Oils May Improve Brain Health
The brain is composed of approximately 60% fatty tissue. The majority of brain tissue is composed of omega-3 fatty acids. Brain function is dependent on the consumption of these oils. Some studies have shown individuals who consume higher levels of omega-3s have slower decline in mental function as they age. (4)
Additionally, other studies noted individuals reporting less depressive symptoms with increased fish oil consumption. (5)
Importantly, infants and children can benefit from fish oils, as well. ADHD and other neurodevelopmental conditions can affect a child’s learning and development. Fish oil supplements have been shown to help reduce hyperactivity and inattention. (6) (7)
3. Eye Health and Omega-3s
Your eyes rely on omega-3s to function properly. Individuals who did not consume enough fish oils had a greater risk of eye disease (8). Age-related macular degeneration was slowed with the consumption of fish oils.
4. May Reduce Inflammation
Not all inflammation is bad. Inflammation is our body’s way to fight of infection and treat injuries. However, chronic inflammation is associated with obesity, diabetes, depression, and heart disease.(9) Fish oil supplements have been shown to significantly reduce joint pain and stiffness.
5. Skin Health and Fish Oils
Our skin is the largest organ of our body. Fish oils lubricate the skin from the inside. Fish oils have been shown to improve the integrity of the skin and decrease conditions such as psoriasis and dermatitis. (10)
The Bottom Line
Overall, omega-3s are good for your health as they contribute to heart health, brain and eye development. Also, fish oils reduce inflammation. Food is always recommended first. However, if you are not eating enough oily fish it is important to consider supplementation.
Venture Chiropractic carries high-quality omega-3 supplements. We carry fish oils from sustainable sources, are quality checked for purity, and contaminants have been removed. The concentration, purity, and freshness is closely monitored. This means you are getting the freshest fish!