True story: I work for a supplement company that makes an omega 3-6-9 fish oil product and I didn't take one myself... until I started writing this article.
Fish oils are packed with many benefits for men specifically, from improved memory and eyesight to joint, bone, and heart health.
As men we seem to focus on the exciting aspects of health and wellness like workouts or proteins, but we often neglect the boring but essential things like taking a multivitamin or getting your daily amount of omegas. Let's take a look at all the benefits to taking fish oil daily.
Fish oil is a dietary source of omega-3 fatty acids that’s derived from, you guessed it, oily fish — like herring, mackerel, salmon, tuna, sardines, anchovies and trout. Your body uses omega-3s for many functions, including muscle activity and cell growth.
There are three main types of fatty acids found in omega-3s:
To achieve optimal benefits, ALA must be converted to EPA or DHA. However, this conversion process is inefficient in humans, as only 1% to 10% of ALA is converted into EPA — and even less into DHA. The remaining ALA is stored in the body like any other fat.
ALA is mostly found in plant-based omega-3 sources like seeds, nuts and plant oils. Fish hold the highest concentration of EPA and DHA.
For this reason, the Cleveland Clinic reports the best way to ensure sufficient omega-3 intake is to eat fatty fish at least twice per week. One Harvard study found that wild fish tend to be higher in omega-3 than farm-raised fish because in the wild, their diet is comprised of smaller fish instead of high-protein food pellets. However, both are beneficial. If you don't eat a lot of fatty fish or seafood, you may want to consider taking a supplement.
If you're like me, I've never been a fan of eating fish or seafood, so thankfully there are fish oil supplements to help fill in the nutritional gaps. Not every fish oil supplement is created equal, though. Keep the following factors in mind when comparing brands and nutrition panels.
The kind of fish and where it comes from are important when choosing omega supplements. It's better to pick a fish oil supplement that comes from one type of fish instead of a mix of different kinds from various places. This is because when fish oils from multiple fish are combined, it's harder to control the quality, purity, and freshness of the oil. In contrast, a supplement made from just one kind of fish allows for better control and makes sure it's sourced intentionally. Also, aim for sustainably sourced, wild-caught, cold-water fish.
Most mainstream health organizations recommend a minimum daily intake of 250-500 mg combined DHA and EPA for healthy adults. This can typically be obtained by consuming about 8 ounces (226 grams) of fatty fish per week, such as salmon, mackerel, or trout, which are natural sources of DHA and EPA.
Heavy metals, dioxins, furans, and PCBs can oxidize the fish oil and lead to rancidity. These contaminants can enter the fish oil through the fish themselves and the surrounding environment. Think of it this way, the higher the fish is on the food chain, the more they accumulate these substances in their bodies. Break open the capsule and smell what’s inside; fresh fish oil will not have a fishy scent.
Pro tip: check to see if the company is trying to mask the rancid scent with flavoring additives.
Though all scientists haven’t reached a consensus about the true power of fish oil, it’s been said to help with a wide range of issues beyond heart health. Benefits of fish oil for men include:
The American Heart Association (AHA) has found that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has found supportive but not conclusive research showing the link between consuming EPA & DHA omega-3 fatty acids and reducing the risk of coronary heart disease.
May improve memory in healthy, older adults as they age.
Can help alleviate joint pain.
High omega-3 levels are linked to better bone mineral density.
Some studies report fish oil can help you lose weight when combined with a healthy diet and regular exercise.
May support eye health and eyesight decline.
Consuming fish oils may help maintain normal blood pressure.
When you eat, your body converts the calories it doesn't need to use right away into triglycerides, a type of fat found in your blood. High triglyceride levels can harden arteries and thicken artery walls, putting you at greater risk for heart disease. Fish oil may help you maintain normal triglyceride levels.
Even if you don’t cook fish every night to reap the benefits of this super-nutrient, the right fish oil supplement, a healthy diet, and regular exercise can work wonders. Our popular Mdrive Omega supplement — packed with 451 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids derived from high-quality fish oil, as well as omega 6 and 9 fatty acids — will give your heart, mind, and body the boost they need to fuel your drive for years to come.
A simple answer to this question is whenever you will remember to take it consistently. There are some studies that show omega-3 fatty acids are best absorbed by your body with meals that contain dietary fat.
Good things take time, fish oils are no different. Most people will start to see benefits after a month to two months.
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