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marylou

fish oil supplements

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Good stuff, or another overpriced supplement? What do you think? I've been taking it a few weeks now, jury is still out. From what I have read, it *should* be pretty good for a body. Do you find any health benefits in this stuff?

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As far as I've studied, high grade pharmaceutical fish oil (Omega-3 fatty acids) at a dose of 3 or more grams per day is pretty much the "super-supplement". Besides reducing over-all body inflammation, it's a huge anti-oxidant, fights cancer, fights brain disease, fights heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, improves glucose tolerance and fights diabetes...

 

the list goes on and on. If you are going to take anything besides a good general multivitamin, I'd recommend fish-oils.

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I take a fish oil supplement. I only take two capsules a day. One things I worry about is contamination with PCBs. At least one manufacturer claims it has a process to purify the product. They claim they convert the fatty acids to the ethyl esters and distill them. Presumably they then hydrolyze them back to the fatty acids.

 

Omega3 Link

 

Another source claims that toxins were not a problem in the products they tested. I can see how mercury would not be, because it would not concentrate in fatty tissure, but rather in meat. PCBs are probably not a problem because the fish used as the oil source are probably mackerel, which are near the bottom of the food chain.

 

Link

 

Edited by catbirdseat

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I wouldn't take a fish oil supplement with a mercury free claim and something to back that claim up

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I wouldn't take a fish oil supplement with a mercury free claim and something to back that claim up

 

can you recommend a brand? I think i need to take glucoasmine too. i am way too lazy to do my own research.

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As far as I've studied, high grade pharmaceutical fish oil (Omega-3 fatty acids) at a dose of 3 or more grams per day is pretty much the "super-supplement". Besides reducing over-all body inflammation, it's a huge anti-oxidant, fights cancer, fights brain disease, fights heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, improves glucose tolerance and fights diabetes...

 

the list goes on and on. If you are going to take anything besides a good general multivitamin, I'd recommend fish-oils.

 

This statement probably needs to be qualified a bit as the data is not as clear as this might suggest. The best data is probably the best regarding the effects on coronary artery disease, cholesterol and high blood pressure but even with coronary artery disease the greatest benefits are probably in the area of secondary prevention (preventing repeat problems in people who already have coronary artery disease) than they are in primary prevention (preventing disease in people who have not had the problems yet).

 

With regard to diabetes, there is no clear evidence at this point that fish oil improves glucose control. In fact, some studies even suggested it might worsen control a bit. Either way, there is no clear evidence of benefit in this regard. Where diabetics may benefit is in decreasing the risk of coronary artery disease, a major problem in such patients.

 

As for cancer prevention, most of the data is from studies in animals with tumors and cell culture models. The epidemiologic studies have not shown as clear evidence yet and there is still not a lot of large randomized trials in humans that show benefit.

 

Finally with regard to the anti-inflammatory effect, it probably comes down to what inflammatory disease process you are talking about. There is a trial just out showing a benefit in disease control for people with lupus. Despite several studies, however, there is no evidence of benefit in people with ulcerative colitis, as another example.

 

There does not appear to be a lot harmful side effects to fish oils, however, so it is hard to see much of a downside to them, although I honestly cannot comment on the PCB or mercury issue. The purity and safety of many nutritional supplements should always be a concern given the less stringent regulation of the supplement industry.

 

As to whether a daily multivitamin is really of use in a healthy, well-fed individual is a topic best left for a whole other discussion. The data from randomized trials does not seem to support the earlier from observational studies (a less effective study design)that said there was benefit to their use.

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I take Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega suppliment which is extra concentrated so you don't need to take as much volume for the same amount of omegas and typically take 5g/day.

 

Though in the Omega RX Zone the recommendation is to first get your insulin levels under control through correct diet and then supplement with the Omegas as he beleives there is little pharmasutical benefit to them without first being conscious about what you eat.

 

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iherb.com has a good selection of higher quality stuff and frequent sales. Shipping is cheap and favors buying in bulk.

 

I take 'NOW' glucosamine+chondroitin+MSM and 'Dr Michael Murray' fish pills, and I'm getting smarter, stronger, and more devilishly handsome with each passing day. Pay attention to daily recommended dosage when comparing costs per day of these things.

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iluka,

 

good point, but basically the same point can be taken for almost all vitamins, supplements, and a ton of medications. It's very hard to study exactly what something does to a human nutritionally.

 

some have convincing argument that it don't matter what you eat, your body will process it and break it down to what you need regardless....you're genes determine the outcome.

 

I've never felt any better or worse on any supplement or multivitamin, but I know hundreds who have and studies to back that up. Plenty of studies to disprove it too. So fuck it, just take the dang fish oil - eskimos seem healthy enough

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good point, but basically the same point can be taken for almost all vitamins, supplements, and a ton of medications. It's very hard to study exactly what something does to a human nutritionally.

 

Absolutely... not an easy thing to study at all. What always amazes me is how big an industry the supplement industry is and how much they manage to sell in the absence of good data for many, if not most, of their products.

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good point, but basically the same point can be taken for almost all vitamins, supplements, and a ton of medications. It's very hard to study exactly what something does to a human nutritionally.

 

Ummm, but earlier you wrote:

 

As far as I've studied, high grade pharmaceutical fish oil (Omega-3 fatty acids) at a dose of 3 or more grams per day is pretty much the "super-supplement". Besides reducing over-all body inflammation, it's a huge anti-oxidant, fights cancer, fights brain disease, fights heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, improves glucose tolerance and fights diabetes...

 

These are a lot of definitive claims for something you claim as hard to study.

 

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Ever been to Northern Norway? There, fish oil is a way of life, consumed by the can (well, almost). A visit there will give you all the data you need to take fish oil, either in liquid or capsule form. Forget about the scientists!

 

The trick to avoiding the 'fish burp' is to take your fish oil before you eat your breakfast in the morning. Works great for me.

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You live in Ballard? Just go to Olsen's and get the bottle with the liquid stuff. You can even get it with a subtle lemon flavor to cover the fishyness.

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good point, but basically the same point can be taken for almost all vitamins, supplements, and a ton of medications. It's very hard to study exactly what something does to a human nutritionally.

 

Ummm, but earlier you wrote:

 

As far as I've studied, high grade pharmaceutical fish oil (Omega-3 fatty acids) at a dose of 3 or more grams per day is pretty much the "super-supplement". Besides reducing over-all body inflammation, it's a huge anti-oxidant, fights cancer, fights brain disease, fights heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, improves glucose tolerance and fights diabetes...

 

These are a lot of definitive claims for something you claim as hard to study.

 

It's neat to see a trend in which assholes tend to see things in black and white. Anyone else notice this?

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It's neat to see a trend in which assholes tend to see things in black and white. Anyone else notice this?

 

amazingly, I think everything on computers is binary :wazup:

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It's neat to see a trend in which assholes tend to see things in black and white. Anyone else notice this?

It's neat to see a trend in which medical professionals rely on ad hominem arguments when debating healthcare issues.

 

The original question was whether fish oil supplements were effective or a waste of money. Is there any 'black and white' evidence that fish oil supplements fights cancer, fights brain disease, fights heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, improves glucose tolerance and fights diabetes?

 

I believe some folks call it evidence-based medicine.

 

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Ever been to Northern Norway? There, fish oil is a way of life, consumed by the can (well, almost). A visit there will give you all the data you need to take fish oil, either in liquid or capsule form. Forget about the scientists!

 

The trick to avoiding the 'fish burp' is to take your fish oil before you eat your breakfast in the morning. Works great for me.

 

Hey! I used to live in Norway. Been to Northern Norway a few times. ...High suicide rate, raging alcoholism, extreme depression... What a place!

 

:brew:

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Precisely! The ones that make it past the alcoholism, depression and suicides to a ripe old age all owe it to the fish oil. Did you have a point?

 

I lived in Norway for 19 years. You?

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The point is that evidence-based medicine doesn't mean that the evidence clearly states that a treatment (especially supplements and vitamins) worked in all the research. You'd be surprised at how many tests and treatments in ALL fields (from brain surgery to energy healing) have little to no well-done research to back anything up besides clinical evidence. Most doctors rely on clinical evidence above all. Doesn't mean there aren't an equal number of papers saying the opposite. So when I said that fish oil is a super-supplement for those conditions, I was saying this based of clinical evidence of myself and other doctors - and there are probably tons of pieces of literature that do not support that claim. That doesn't mean it isn't effective, it just means that studying the effects of any type of drug or supplement is extremely subjective and research results can vary wildly. The same (in fact all more) can be said about research done on exercise science. If you want grey areas, do a meta analysis on a subject in exercise science. So when people get annoyed or angry when all of a sudden their exercise program or favorite vitamin all of a sudden has a study that shows it's ineffectiveness- you could probably wait a few months for a paper to come out saying it's actually very effective.

 

aka, don't be a dumbass

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