Known for its numerous values, fish oil is one of the most widely consumed nutritional supplements. Fish oil is the fat or oil extracted from fish tissue, it comes from fatty or oily fish such as trout, mackerel, tuna, herring, sardines and salmon.
Nutritionists say it is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are very important for health. For those who don’t eat a lot of oily fish, taking a fish oil supplement can help get enough omega-3 fatty acids.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends eating one to two servings of fish a week. This is because the omega-3s in fish provide benefits such as protection against a number of diseases.
According to Emmy Ntamanga, a nutritionist from Kigali, fish oil is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help lower triglyceride levels, thus lowering a person’s risk of stroke and heart attack.
A 2013 study found that people who took fish oil supplements for more than a month had better cardiovascular function during psychologically stressful tests.
Ntamanga says that fish oil has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and can help reduce symptoms of inflammatory diseases, particularly rheumatoid arthritis (a chronic disease characterized by symptoms of inflammation and pain in the joints).
Research suggests that consuming fish oil during pregnancy may help reduce the risk of asthma in children. And a small study found that consuming fish oil during pregnancy reduced allergies in infants. However, it is important to note that you shouldn’t be taking fish oil on its own when you are expecting it. However, it is advisable to speak to your doctor first and, if so, determine the correct dosage and form.
Other research published in Health has linked omega-3s to fat loss. Supplementary fish oil has also been shown to slow the normal decline in muscle mass and function in men and women between 60 and 85 years old. The good fats in fish oil also help stimulate muscle protein growth and improve lean muscle mass, even in sedentary elderly adults, and strengthen the increases in muscle strength induced by resistance training.
Ntamanga adds that some studies suggest that these fatty acids can improve skin health, as well as certain skin conditions like eczema and acne, since fish oil is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. Some fish oils contain nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin D, and selenium. Vitamin A is an antioxidant associated with retinol, a popular ingredient in skin care products and used to treat skin conditions.
He also points out that diet or exercise supplements can help you lose weight.
Healthline states that research suggests that fish oil supplements may prevent some mental disorders from occurring or improve symptoms. For example, it can reduce the likelihood of psychotic disorders in high-risk patients.
The nutritionist adds that fish oil can also be beneficial in treating dry eyes, for example, people can take fish oil as a dietary supplement, either in capsule form or in liquid form. Alternatively, one can get fish oil by eating oily fish like salmon and tuna.
If you are wondering when to take fish oil, Healthline notes that fish oil can be taken any time of the day depending on when it works best for you. This is because most research suggests that the potential benefits of fish oil supplements are not immediate, but are rather related to long-term use. Studies show that consuming fish oil for weeks, months, or even years can increase the levels of omega-3 fatty acids in the blood.