How to Buy and Use Fish Oil Supplements

There are so many omega-3 fish oil supplements on the market that it is often confusing to choose a brand. If you can, opt for a brand from fish caught in relatively pollution-free waters. Doing so will lower your likelihood of consuming extra mercury or other toxins. Some companies identify the source of their fish oils, such as Norwegian salmon.

Most fish oil supplements contain roughly three-fifths EPA and two-fifths DHA. If you want a high-EPA supplement use Omega-Brite, which contains 90 percent EPA and 10 percent DHA. To enhance the anti-inflammatory effects of omega-3 fish oils take gamma-linolenic acid supplements. (See the following section.) DHA supplements made from algae may not have the anti-inflammatory effect of EPA, but they may provide other health benefits, such as improving memory.

Flaxseed is a rich nonanimal source of alpha-linolenic acid, and flaxseed oil capsules are sometimes recommended as a source of omega-3 fatty acids. While flaxseed is indeed an excellent source of alpha-linolenic acid, many people have difficulty converting it to EPA and DHA, which would limit its usefulness as a supplement.

Dosage: For prevention of inflammatory disorders, take 1 gram of omega-3 fish oil capsules daily. If you have a form of arthritis, take at least 3 grams daily of omega-3 fish oils. If you never eat fish, you may want to take at least 5 grams of fish oils daily. In addition, take 400 IU of natural vitamin E daily, which will protect the fish oils from free-radical damage.

Side effects: Fish oil supplements have been shown to lower blood levels of triglyceride, a fat associated with an increased risk of coronary artery disease, but sometimes to raise cholesterol levels slightly. In addition, the blood-thinning effect of fish oils may be magnified if you take several other blood thinners, including vitamin E, ginkgo, or Coumadin.

Ask your physician to monitor you, especially if you are taking Coumadin, a prescription anticoagulant drug.

Arthritis Joint Pain

Arthritis Joint Pain

Arthritis is a general term which is commonly associated with a number of painful conditions affecting the joints and bones. The term arthritis literally translates to joint inflammation.

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