Fish oil is a dietary source of omega-3 fatty acids. Your body needs omega-3 fatty acids for many functions, from muscle activity to cell growth. Omega-3 fatty acids (the medical name for fish oil) may help decrease inflammation and decrease the risk of developing heart disease. At first, taking a supplement seems to be an easy decision. After all, why eat fish if you can get the active ingredients in a pill? Manufacturers tout the benefits relentlessly, but sometimes push so hard it seems as if they are trying to sell snake oil. Contrast that with studies suggesting that taking fish oil is worthless, or may cause harm. What does the evidence suggest? Here are some important things to consider:
- DHA (docosahexaenoic acid ethyl ester) and EPA (ethyl eicosapentaenoic acid) are the active ingredients in omega-3 fatty acids and have been shown in multiple studies to lower triglyceride levels.
- There also appears to be a slight improvement in high-density lipoprotein (HDL, or “good”) cholesterol, although an increase in levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or “bad”) cholesterol also was observed Although there are popular myths that taking Omega-3 fatty acid lowers your cholesterol, it does not.
- It will lower your triglycerides, may modestly raise your HDL (which is a benefit), but can actually raise your LDL (bad) cholesterol, which is not a benefit.
- Only the pure EPA type of omega-3 fatty acids has been shown to not raise LDL cholesterol.Omega-3 supplements may have health benefits other than for the heart.Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for good health.
- Try to get them from your diet by eating fish — broiled or baked, not fried.
- Omega-3 fatty acid supplements might be helpful if you have high triglycerides or rheumatoid arthritis.
- It’s not clear whether fish oil is safe for people who are allergic to seafood.
Side effects of fish oil
- A fishy aftertaste
- Bad breath
Taking high doses of fish oil supplements might increase the risk of bleeding and possibly increase the risk of stroke.
Also read : Benefits of Fish Oil