Life’s Abundance is a IFOS 5-star fish oil! Check it out after reading this article!
Most of us are aware of the benefits of a diet that includes fish at least two times a week. Selecting foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids are essential to offset the imbalance of omega-6 and 9, which some have estimated to be 20 to 50 times the amount of omega-3s. This imbalance has been linked to serious health risks, including heart attacks, asthma, stroke, cancer, insulin resistance, diabetes, arthritis, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), sleep apnea and the list goes on.
Unlike the traditional Asian diet or Mediterranean diet, both of which include a healthier ratio of omega-3s to omega-6s, our Western diet is characterized by a high intake of saturated and omega-6 fatty acids, and reduced omega-3 fat intake. For this reason, many doctors and nutritionists recommend supplementing with a high quality fish oil. Inflammation at a cellular level can be greatly reduced by increasing the omega 3 fatty acids of EPA and DHA, which our bodies need.
DHA is a major structural fat in the brain and retina. It supplies up to 97 percent of the omega-3 fats in the brain and up to 93 percent of the omega-3 fats in the retina. It is also an integral nutrient of the heart. EPA is essential for healthy cardiovascular function, lowering triglycerides and increasing good cholesterol. There are other benefits to taking EPA and DHA. They can be a source of energy, insulate the body against heat loss, protect skin from drying and flaking and cushion tissues and organs.
Here are 5 questions to consider when choosing a fish oil supplement:
Does the fish oil contain a high percentage of EPA and DHA?
Most supplements contain 20 to 40 percent, while an ultra-refined fish oil should contain at least 60 percent. Unfortunately, some brands may mislead the consumer by listing total omega-3s, rather than breaking it down to actual amounts of EPA and DHA.
Are you getting your money’s worth?
Because some health care providers recommend between 1,000 and 3,000 mgs, it may be difficult to take the recommended amount if the concentration is so low; it may require up to a dozen capsules, which in the end costs more.
Is it pure?
Many fish oils are refined by using a molecular distillation process to reduce contamination levels. For a fish oil to be ultra refined, extra steps are taken to guarantee the removal of harmful toxins.
Is it fresh?
Unless the bottle is sealed for freshness (with a nitrogen flush) to remove the oxygen from the bottle, the process of oxidation will have a serious effect on the integrity of the fish oil. When opened, it is recommended to keep the bottle in the freezer to prevent oxidation.
Does it meet certification standards of a reputable third party?
“The International Fish Oil Standards (IFOS) is recognized as one of the world’s most reliable sources for rigorous, objective, scientific analysis of fish oil supplements.” Based on stringent requirements for concentration, purity and freshness, supplements can earn a IFOS 5-star rating. Because supplements in general are not required to meet these standards, there may be products on the market which provide less value.
Now there is an opportunity to check your own level of EPA and DHA. By sending in a small blood sample to http://omegaquant.com/omega-3-index/, you can find out if you are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids. Then, as an informed consumer, you can make a decision as to which fish oil to use.
And for our furry friends who also have a need for omega-3s, we offer an Ultra-Pure Fish Oil for pets!
“What are EPA/DHA?” Dr. Ron Hoffman. Intelligent Medicine. http://drhoffman.com/article/what-are-epadha-13/.
“Fast food fever: reviewing the impacts of the Western diet on immunity.” Ian A. Myles. Nutritional Journal. http://www.nutritionj.com/content/13/1/61.
“Fish Consumption, Fish Oil, Omega-3 Fatty Acids, and Cardiovascular Disease.” Penny M. Kris-Etherton, PhD et al. http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/106/21/2747.full.