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Omega 3 Info

Fish oil capsules

Fish oil capsules Pure EPA

How strong are your fish oil capsules?

Pure EPA is 93% concentration-strength – this has nothing to do with how many milligrams the capsule contains.

Milligrams is the quantity the capsule contains.
Concentration is the strength of the oil.

For example:

1 Pint 1 Pint
8.0% 4.0%

Both these pints are equal in quantity i.e. 1 pint, as you will notice one is 8.0% the other 4.0%, they are both still a pint but one is double the strength of the other.

This also applies to fish oil capsules

1 gram; 1 gram; 1 gram;
oil 1 (Pure EPA) oil 2 oil 3
93% 70% 50%

Again, all the above oils are equal in quantity but all differ in strength. The strongest is oil1 then oil 2 then oil 3.

The bottom line

In very simple terms Pure EPA is 93% strength and has 300mg of pure EPA in each capsule so 4 capsules = 1.2g of 93% strength of pure EPA.

Fish oil vitamin

Fish oil is an excellent source of the essential Omega 3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA. They are classed as essential because the body needs them but cannot synthesise them itself and has to obtain them from dietary sources. The Omega 3’s have extraordinary health benefits that have now been validated by studies from all over the world; however, most of us do not get enough of these in our diet.   Omega 3’s are found in high quantities in cold water oily fish such as Sardines, Mackerel, Salmon and Tuna but because of the risk of potentially harmful toxins in fresh fish, many people prefer to supplement their diet with fish oil.

There are basically two types of fish oil available; one is extracted from the fatty tissue of fish and the other from the liver of fish, cod liver oil for example.  Both types contain the essential Omega 3 fatty acids but cod liver oil can also contain high levels of Vitamin A and Vitamin D and these vitamins can accumulate in the body over time and possibly lead to vitamin toxicity.

Vitamin A is necessary for night vision and helps to fight infection but too much of it can result in severe vitamin A toxicity.  Any oil extracted from the liver of fish will contain higher and potentially harmful levels of vitamin A.  Vitamin D helps our body to absorb calcium and is necessary for healthy bones and teeth. We can source vitamin D from sunlight as well as from some dietary sources and supplements, but exposure to excess sunlight will not cause vitamin D toxicity. Vitamin D toxicity is most likely to arise from people taking vitamin supplements or fish oil supplements containing vitamin D.

One of the problems with any type of fish oil is the risk of rancidity.  As they are highly unsaturated, fish oils can oxidise very easily.  This means that without added protection, they can quickly become impure and lead to an increase in the number of free radicals in the body, which could counteract any of the health benefits of taking the fish oil in the first place.

To avoid this problem, it is important when choosing a fish oil to look for one that contains an efficient antioxidant such as vitamin e, tocopherol.  This will help to keep the fish oil fresh and prevent it from going rancid, it will also help to preserve the beneficial and protective effects of the Omega 3 fatty acids present in the fish oil.

Some types of cod liver oil have been processed in such a way that all the natural Vitamin A and D has been removed and a synthetic form of vitamin A and D added.  This type of oil can increase your risk of suffering from vitamin toxicity.  If you are in doubt about the level of vitamins in your body, the only way of finding out is to have your levels tested by your GP.

Pure EPA pharmaceutical grade omega 3 fish oil only contains the natural form of vitamin E, this has been added to help keep the oil fresh both in the capsule and in the body.

How Fat Makes me Fit

I’m not talking about any old fat, but the kind of fat that is pulled out of fish and seeds. Particularly a fat called Omega 3.

Amazingly, taking this kind of fat can make you fitter.

Your brain functions at a higher rate, your immune system is boosted, cardiovascular disease is reduced and a lot more, simply by eating oil from a fish.

People much more intelligent than me, the kind who wear white coats and hang out in laboratories, tell me that if I take Omega 3 fatty acids as part of a balanced diet it will make me more healthy and fit than if I did not.

Benefits of Omega 3 fish oil

  • Increased brain function
  • Improved immune system
  • Reduction of cardiovascular disease
  • Controlling cholesterol
  • Increasing metabolism
  • Looking after the skin
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Maintaining water balance

It will even increase brain function. Now that really caught my attention as I’m always interested with increasing my brain function.

Omega 3 oils are extremely fashionable these days Health magazines rave about the benefits of omega 3 or tell you to chug down gallons of this super fat each day.

But what’s the reality? I confess, I knew relatively nothing about fish oils and omega 3’s before writing this article. But as I researched I was shocked. Let me explain.

Well I was shocked. Let me explain.

Omega 3 is an oil, a polyunsaturated fat, or alpha-linolenic acid. The shocking fact is that they are essential for the brain, nervous system, immune system, cardiovascular system and even our skin.

When I say essential I mean parts of our body would basically shut down or be function with less capability without omega 3. I don’t know about you, but I like to have my brain operating at full function.

When omega 3 is in the body it is converted into DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). Both DHA and EPA perform essential jobs for the body.

Here’s the problem. The body cannot create the essential acids by itself. It needs the omega 3 oils to do that. Actually it’s a little more complex than that, but I’m simplifying what could be a 10,000 word article.

Basically, we need omega 3 fats. Other fats like saturated fat and monounsaturated fat are not needed. You could very easily live a healthy, happy and productive life without those fats. They do offer energy, but unless you are going to burn off those fats they will soon move in and take up home in your gut or thighs. Evicting them will prove a lot harder in the long run.

Omega 3 in it’s simplest form, is a fat which is essential for the correct functioning of our body. If our body cannot create it, then where can we find it?

Most people in the modern world are deficient in Omega 3 oils, which means they are not performing to their potential, unfortunately there has been an explosion in saturated fat consumption. Compounding that, a lot of polyunsaturated fat has had the goodness stripped from them and become what is known as trans fats, or processed fats or perhaps you know them as hydrogenated fats.

These hydrogenated fats started out being full of natures goodness, containing omega 3 oils and other nutrients. But because exposure to heat and oxygen stamps natures goodness out of these oils the end product is nothing we really need apart from the calories.

Huge machines will process healthy oils like sunflower oil into hardened lumps of calories, devoid of anything we really need. Think about that when scoffing your favourite chocolate bar, which is basically chocolate flavoured vegetable fat with all of the good stuff stripped out.

So where can we find natural sources of Omega 3?

In descending order of concentration.

  • Salmon
  • Anchovy
  • Sardine
  • Herring
  • Mackerel
  • Trout
  • Swordfish
  • Tuna

One of the most convenient ways of getting omega 3 is with a supplement in capsule form. Not everyone wishes to eat fish everyday.

I don’t know about you, but I’m about to change my diet to a more omega 3 rich diet. Hopefully it will improve my game of chess.

Lyndon Antcliff

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