So what does fish oil do exactly, and why should we consider incorporating a high-strength omega-3 into our day-to-day regimen?
First of all, it’s worth pointing out what fish oil is: a fatty acid derived from the tissues of oily fish. The primary omega-3 fatty acids are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). They are known as ‘essential’ since the human body is unable to produce them on its own.
Together, EPA and DHA contribute to the maintenance of:
• Normal blood pressure (obtained with daily intake of 3g EPA & DHA*)
• Normal blood triglyceride levels (daily intake 2g EPA & DHA*)
• Normal function of the heart (daily intake 250mg EPA & DHA)
Independently, DHA contributes to:
• Normal brain function (daily intake 250mg DHA)
• Normal visual development of infants up to 12 months (daily intake 100mg DHA)
• Normal brain development of foetus and breastfed infants (maternal daily intake 200mg DHA, in addition to 250mg EPA & DHA)
• The maintenance of normal vision (daily intake 250mg DHA)
Emerging research underlines the value of omega-3s. According to one 2017 study by Harvard Medical School, omega-3 fatty acids (OFAs) found in flax, hemp and fish oils can both prevent and treat inflammation and oxidative stress caused by air pollution, delivering a 30-50% reduction in harm.
The next time you’re asked ‘What does fish oil do?’ you can confidently reply, ‘Rather a lot!’
Deep-sea fish oil rTG concentrate (from sustainably sourced sardine, mackerel and anchovy), fish gelatin, humectant: glycerol, natural orange flavour, antioxidant: a balanced mix of rosemary and tocopherol rich extracts.
Take one or more softgels per day as needed, preferably with food. If you are unable to easily swallow softgels, but still wish to reap the benefits of UnoCardio X2, you can pierce one of the softgels and gently squeeze it into yogurt, apple sauce, porridge or a food of your choice.
Store in cool (max. 25°C) and dry conditions, away from direct light. Do not freeze. Keep out of reach of small children. The daily dose of EPA + DHA must not exceed 5g.
Food supplements are not a replacement for a varied and balanced diet or healthy lifestyle. Do not exceed the recommended daily dose.
Do NOT take if you are allergic to fish. If you are pregnant, nursing or using a blood thinner, talk to your doctor before use.
Deep-Sea Fish Oil Concentrate (93% Omega-3 rTG) 1300mg
Omega-3 Fatty Acids 1200mg
Q: What is fish oil?
A: Fish oil is made from the fats of small fish such as mackerel, sardines, herring etc. Fish oil comprises the beneficial fatty acids EPA & DHA, which carry many scientifically proven health benefits. It is commonly used to raise one's omega-3 intake and helps to maintain healthy vision, heart and brain function.
Not all fish oil supplements are equal, with factors such as purity, manufacturing process and fish species determining quality. Many fish oils provide just 30% omega-3, with 18% coming from EPA and 12% from DHA. This means that the remaining 70% of the capsule consists of unnecessary or perhaps even unhealthy fats. Impurities such as heavy metals and PCBs are a common problem among cheap fish oil supplements.
Even concentrated fish oils are made as ethyl esters, containing 60% to 80% omega-3. Although the omega concentration is higher, these fatty acids are not in a very bioavailable form and still contain up to 40% unnecessary or unhealthy fats.
Highly concentrated fish oils, meanwhile, are extremely rare and contain 90% to 95% omega-3. These are not made as ethyl esters but are available in a superior, more bio-available form, r-triglyceride (rTG). These oils supply the greatest amount of EPA and DHA per softgel and are of the highest purity available. UnoCardio 1000 contains a minimum of 95% omega-3, while UnoCardio X2 contains 93% omega-3.
Q: What makes WHC fish oils different?
A: Ever since Jo Wyckmans founded WHC, his passion has been to supply the “best of the best” omegas on the market. Small-species fish (less prone to absorbing toxins) naturally sourced from the cleanest waters on Earth – the South Pacific coast – and concentrated and purified via an environmentally-friendly distillation process, WHC omegas contain the highest proportion of essential fatty acids DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid).
The health benefits of essential fatty acids have been underscored in countless studies over a number of years. WHC’s supplements contain 90-95% omega-3 in a single softgel, equivalent to 3-10 standard fish oil softgels.
While most concentrated fish oils on the market are in the ethyl ester form (a synthetic fat), WHC's formulas are produced in true r-triglyceride (rTG) form. Research has proven the bioavailability of the r-triglyceride form to be vastly superior – up to 70% greater than ethyl esters.
Q: What are EPA and DHA?
A: EPA and the DHA are the fatty acids associated with the most commonly-cited benefits.
The human body synthesises EPA and DHA poorly, which is why they must be obtained from food or omega supplements. Both EPA and DHA play an essential role in the maintenance of overall wellbeing. A healthy daily consumption of EPA and DHA may vary from 250mg up to 3g. DHA is one of the most crucial fatty acids in the brain and retina of the eye, which accounts for why it contributes to the maintenance of brain health and vision when consumed at 250mg per day.
In some cases, DHA and EPA have combined benefits. For example, both contribute towards the normal function of the heart (at least 250mg per day) as well as the maintenance of normal blood triglyceride levels (2g/day) and normal blood pressure (3g/day). One should not exceed a supplemental daily intake of 5g of EPA and DHA combined.
Q: Is cod liver oil a good alternative to fish oil?
A: For many, ‘fish oil’ is synonymous with ‘cod liver oil’. However, the fish oil discussed here has little or no connection with cod liver oil. It is actually quite harmful to consume large amounts of cod liver oil if your goal is to elevate your omega-3 intake. This is because many cod liver oils products contain high levels of vitamin A, which can increase one’s risk of osteoporosis. The European Food Safety Authority clearly stipulates that Europeans already consume sufficient vitamin A via their diet, so this particular vitamin is no longer appropriate for food enrichment and supplements. You can read more on the topic of fish oil vs cod liver oil here.
Q: What about krill oil?
A: Some people consider krill oil to be a valid alternative to omega-3 fish oil, due to the purported ‘enhanced’ bioavailability of its phospholipid form. As the name indicates, it is derived from krill, tiny crustaceans found in the Arctic Ocean. However, the relatively low dose of EPA and DHA means that it is extremely difficult to significantly elevate your blood plasma levels of omega-3 to have a tangible therapeutic effect. Indeed, krill oil only has around 12% omega-3, 15 times less than is found in WHC fish oils.
In one study comparing manufacturer-recommended doses of rTG fish oil, ethyl ester fish oil, TG omega-3 from salmon oil and phospholipid from krill oil, the Omega-3 Index was increased most dramatically by the rTG fish oil (approx. 58% increase), with krill being the least effective (only 11% increase).
Q: Can’t we just eat oily fish instead of taking supplements?
A: Oily fish is a great source of omega-3s, leading many to wonder whether they need to supplement at all. However, while it’s true that you can get all the omega-3 you need from eating oily fish such as herring or anchovies, the pollution of our oceans means we would do well to somewhat limit our fish consumption. Fish accumulate mercury and other heavy metals over time; they have also been found to contain microplastics, and some fish and shellfish can accumulate illness-causing microorganisms like bacteria and viruses too. A fish oil supplement which has been extensively tested for contaminants is a good alternative, although eating modest quantities of oily fish is still recommended.
In any case, most Westerners do not consume enough omega-3 via their diet, meaning supplementation is required to achieve levels recommended by government and health officials.
Q: What should I look for in a fish oil supplement?
A: When making your fish oil purchase, you should look for a product which contains high levels of EPA and DHA per serving; uses small-species, sustainable fish; is made by a reputable manufacturer who follows good manufacturing practices (GMPs) and has achieved an appreciable rating from the IFOS (International Fish Oil Standards Program); and which contains no, or barely detectable traces of, contaminants. Additionally, you can refer to third-party review aggregators such as Labdoor for impartial opinion and analysis.
If you have a question which is not answered here, do not hesitate to contact us. We are always glad to help!
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