Fish oil has long been a staple supplement in many people’s diets. It has many health benefits linked to heart health, skin and hair nourishment, reproductive health, and many other things. But what actually happens when you take a fish oil supplement every day? What are the benefits and what, if any, are the potential side effects?
In this article we’ll discuss some of the health benefits you can get from taking a fish oil supplement every day as well as potential side effects that may come with it and how they can be relieved.
Keep reading to find out more about:
- What fish oil is and what happens if you take fish oil every day
- The many health benefits of fish oil
- Potential side effects of too much fish oil
What is fish oil?
Fish oil has been a staple dietary supplement since it first hit the market in the 1980’s.
Fish oil is extracted from the tissues of certain oily fish including mackerel, tuna, herring and salmon. Fish oil is high in omega-3 fatty acids such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). It has been linked to preventing heart failure, fatty liver disease, conditions linked to kidney disease, and menstrual cramps.
This supplement has truly stood the test of time as an essential daily supplement and it’s benefits continue to be uncovered as more research is done.
Benefits of fish oil
Many fish oil benefits come from it’s high omega-3 fatty acid content.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for your body to function. With an inability to create omega-3s on our own we must get these essential foods from foods like fish or supplements like fish oil.
As a staple in the dietary supplement market, fish oil has long proven it’s beneficial qualities to a variety of health issues. Some of the benefits include:
- Preventing against heart failure
- Nourishment of skin and hair
- Relieving depression and anxiety
- Reduction in menstrual cramps
Fish oil improves cardiovascular health
Cardiovascular health is incredibly important and there are many ways in which fish oil helps to improve cardiovascular health and prevent cardiac diseases. The omega-3 fatty acids that fish oil contains, EPA and DHA, have been found to help combat inflammation, manage irregular heart beats, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Fish oil can also help with stuff like hypertension, a condition of which 11 million Americans may have and not realize. So, whether cardiovascular health concerns are a part of your family history or not, fish oil can help to keep your heart calm and your mind soothed.
Fish oil nourishes skin and hair
While skin and hair nourishment may not be your first priority, it is a benefit of taking fish oil on a regular basis. Low levels in omega-3 fatty acids can cause your skin to be dry and your hair to be brittle. However, taking a fish oil supplement regularly can help to nourish skin and hair allowing you to have healthier skin and stronger hair.
Fish oil may help with relieving depression and anxiety
Recent studies have suggested that n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (aka omega-3 fatty acids) may be a potential treatment for major depressive disorder and similar mental health disorders. While more research needs to be done, the studies state that depending on the severity of an individual's depressive symptoms, the omega-3s found in fish oil may have potential benefits.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also essential in the development and function of the central nervous system. Due to their critical role in the nervous system development, studies suggest that a deficiency in omega-3s may play a role in anxiety levels and mood related disorders.
Reducing menstrual pain
Menstrual cramps can be extremely painful and some medications may not help as much as you’d expect. Fish oil supplements, taken either alone or with a vitamin B12 or E supplement, could help to relieve painful period cramps and may reduce the need for other medications thanks to the anti-inflammatory qualities of omega-3 oils.
Potential side effects of fish oil
The few side effects of fish oil are often mild and can be reduced in a variety of ways.
When taken at the recommended dosage, fish oil has very few and very mild side effects. While generally unnoticed or easily managed some side effects of fish oil may include
- Loose stool/diarrhea
Making sure that the supplements that you are taking are high quality can help reduce the risk of side effects. Taking the supplements with meals or freezing them may also help to relieve some potential side effects.
It is also important to make sure that you are buying from a reputable and regulated source so as to avoid the risk of taking supplements containing mercury or other harmful contaminants that may make their way into the product.
Storage of your supplements is also important as many fish oil supplements can oxidize easily, have a low tolerance for heat, and can easily go rancid. For this reason, you want to look for fish oil supplements that also contain antioxidants such as astaxanthin.
Fish oil has been a long-standing supplement on the market with lots of research done about it’s beneficial properties and new research is being done all the time on all of it’s incredible capabilities. With the body’s inability to create omega-3 fats on it’s own, a fish oil supplement can benefit all of us in varying ways.
So, what happens if you take fish oil every day? Lots of good things! If you follow the proper dosage recommendations and make sure to consult your doctor before starting fish oil, you’re bound to see many benefits from taking a daily fish oil supplement.