Fish oil contains omega-3 polyunsaturated fat known as fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are naturally found in fish. Some fish such as salmon, rainbow trout, and mackerel are better sources of omega-3 fatty acids than other types of fish. The news and health media often provide information about how healthy omega-3 fatty acids are, but what does fish oil do for the body?
Omega-3 fatty acids have many benefits to the body. Omega-3 fatty acid is perhaps best known for its ability to decrease the risk of heart disease in populations that eat a considerable amount of fish. Fish oil supplements are thought to help heart disease, angina, and help decrease high blood pressure and high cholesterol which can cause higher risks of heart disease.
In addition to fish oil heart benefits, fish oil may help prevent certain types of cancer such as breast and colon cancers. Some resources claim that omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil can improve conditions such as asthma, gout, and lupus. Fish oil may help rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and migraines.
Some fertility specialists claim that fish oil can improve fertility for both men and women. For women, fish oil can improve some ailments such as mood disorders and inflammatory conditions that can interfere with fertility. For men, taking fish oil can decrease the cholesterol in the sperms which is sometimes a cause of male infertility. Fish oil can also improve sperm motility.
Taking large quantities of fish oil supplements can cause health problems like increased fat intake and decreased effectiveness of antioxidants. A common problem with supplements is a lack of strict regulations which can cause someone to obtain supplements that may be contaminated. Many physicians, dieticians, and other experts recommend including fish high in omega-3 fatty acids like salmon, albacore tuna, and swordfish in the diet. Getting nutrients from the diet is often considered much healthier than taking dietary supplements.
People who are considering taking fish oil for any reason should first discuss this plan with their doctors. Patients should never switch from taking prescribed medication to supplements without discussing the pros and cons of the supplements and medication with the doctor first. A lack of scientific research to support claims of the benefits of some supplements in treating certain conditions is a common problem. Therefore, it can be extremely risky for someone to switch from prescribed medication to supplements without being closely monitored by a physician.