Are fish oil supplements just as good as eating fish?
Probably not, especially if the supplements are in the “ethyl ester” form.
A recent study examined how at the molecular level, omega-3 fat and DHA lower blood pressure. The scientists looked at both the natural food “triglyceride” form and the ethyl ester supplement form.
They found that the natural form of DHA lowered blood pressure by triggering relaxation in the muscles of the artery walls. To their surprise, however, the supplement ethyl ester form of DHA had no beneficial effect on lowering blood pressure and even worse, actually interfered with the natural DHA’s beneficial effects.
Unfortunately, most fish oil supplements are in the ethyl ester form. Be sure to look carefully at the fine print on the label to determine whether the fish oil supplement is in the natural “triglyceride” form or the “ethyl ester” form.
One brand in the natural form is Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega.
In my view, however, the best choice is to get your vital omega-3 fats from oily fish like wild salmon and to only use fish oil supplements if you cannot or do not eat fish.
The omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids found in fish oil are not made by the body and must be consumed in the diet. The fatty acids work to lower the body’s production of triglycerides. High levels of triglycerides can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Consumption of fatty fish or fish oil supplements may have other health benefits as well including reduced joint inflammation and a reduced risk of age-related mental issues.
If you’ve shopped for fish oil supplements, you may have seen a product called “krill oil” on store shelves.
Whereas most fish oil supplements are made from fatty fish like sardines, mackerel, and anchovies, krill oil is made from krill — tiny, shrimp-like crustaceans found in the sea.
Some studies have found that krill oil supplements may do a better job of getting the working fatty acids, EPA and DHA, into the cells.
Krill oil also contains more EPA than fish oil and has other beneficial substances, including phospholipids that help brain cell function, and antioxidants that fight off free radicals in the body.
Krill oil supplements have still other benefits for menstruating women. A 2003 study published in the journal “Alternative Medicine Review” found that krill oil supplements were effective in reducing menstrual cramps and premenstrual syndrome symptoms.
One word of caution if you take or are planning to take krill oil or any form of fish oil supplement. If you are on prescription medication, let your doctor know about the fish oil supplements as these may interact with certain drugs such as blood thinners.
Are fish oil supplements just as good as eating fish?
- Lifestyles & Community
Burning bridges and the importance of relationships
“Congratulations on your new job!” You tell a co-worker who announced she would be leaving in a couple of weeks. “Where are you going?” You ask her.
“I’ve landed a job that will put this place to shame! I am so excited about leaving here. This is going to be a great chance to advance my career,” the co-worker tells you.
Ensuring children develop a habit brushing their teeth
“Are you sure you brushed your teeth?” the father asked his son. His son solemnly nodded. His father said, “Let me smell your breath.” The son obligingly opened his mouth. Finally, the father said, “I need to check and see if your toothbrush is wet.”
This type of exchange happens in many households as children often do not brush their teeth, even when told to do so. This nightly inquisition can occur less frequently if parents establish a habit in their children to brush their teeth.
Saturated fat consumption leads to abdominal fat
New research from Uppsala University shows that eating more saturated fat in the diet causes an increase in the amount of fat stored in the abdominal area in comparison with extra consumption of polyunsaturated fat.
County’s oldest consignment sale begins today
The Little Ones’ Consignment Sale, Madison County’s oldest semi-annual sale of its kind, is open to the public 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. today (Friday) and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at the multi-ministry center behind United Methodist Church, West Main Street, Richmond. Marked items are half price on Saturday.
There’s more to do at the Village Trough
“I wish there was more to do here.”
Do you ever find yourself saying this sentence as you sit there bored out of your mind? Have you heard others ask it?
Well, there is something more to do now that Village Trough in Berea is staging shows with local and regional talent and preparing to open as a full dining and entertainment venue.
Let’s have a Mardi Gras party in Kentucky
It’s the time of year when the people in New Orleans celebrate a festival called Mardi Gras. Many states now do the same. Some call it “Fat Tuesday” which I have never understood till I went to New Orleans (five times) and saw all of the excitement for myself.
Beat the winter blues with meatballs
When it’s this cold outside it’s nice to warm up with some good comfort food.
I can think of few things more wonderful than the smell of simmering meatballs coming from the kitchen while I cuddle with my two young children, and a few good books, on a brisk winter day.
Taste test Thursday
The sun is shining, but the chill has returned, so I hope you made the most of the warm, sunny weather this weekend.
The spring greens are being as tentative as the warm temperatures, but there is talk of lettuce being harvested and a continued trickle of kale, pea shoots, miner’s lettuce and spinach. To make room for the spring harvests, winter squash and sweet potatoes have been marked down to $1/pound and pumpkins are only 50 cents/pound.
Buttercups in grazed pastures
One of the signs that spring has arrived is when the yellow flowers of buttercup begin to appear, but it’s during the winter months that the vegetative growth of buttercup takes place.
As a cool season weed, this plant often flourishes in overgrazed pasture fields with poor stands of desirable forages. In fact, many fields that have dense buttercup populations are fields heavily grazed by animals during the fall through the early spring months.
Make a difference this summer, volunteer at 4-H Camp
On June 30 more than 200 Madison County kids will load a bus headed for four days and three nights of fun at 4-H Summer Camp.
Campers will have a chance to hike, swim, dance and spend time learning about the environment, their friends and themselves.
And we need your help to make it possible!
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