Are you among thousands of others who still ask “How much fish oil should I take?”
Well, the answer depends on the following factors:
Kids do not require high quantities of omega 3 fats. The same holds true for adults when compared with senior citizens. As we age, our bodies start demanding more of these essential fats to combat certain health conditions. Therefore, kids need a much smaller dose of omega 3 fats than adults, and likewise adults need a smaller dose than elderly people.
If you are suffering from a health condition like arthritis or an inflammatory disease (or if you have signs of ADHD, depression, mood swings, etc.) you are surely short of omega 3 essential fats. This means you need an even higher dose of fish oil supplements as compared to a normal, healthy person.
DHA Content in the Supplement
DHA fat is the most vital of all the omega 3 fatty acids. Studies have proved that the majority of the benefits of omega 3 fats are down to DHA. If your supplement has high DHA levels, you need fewer soft gels. If the supplement has a low DHA percentage, you may need to take a higher number of pills to compensate for the DHA deficiency in your body.
Because all these parameters are variable, there is no fixed quantity defined. A daily recommended dosage for a normal healthy person is at least 250mg of DHA type of omega 3 fat. Different people have different omega 3 needs depending on their health condition and their age. No one except your physician can tell you how much fish oil you should take per day to reap the maximum benefits.
After finding out the quantity of DHA that you need on a daily basis; you can then decide the number of pills you need based on their individual DHA levels. For example, the 1000 mg of fish oil gel that I take has 280 mg of DHA and 120 mg of EPA. To get omega 3 benefits like protection from heart attacks and strokes, cardiovascular health benefits and protection from mood swings and depression, I take two soft gels per day.
Now that you know the answer to “how much fish oil should I take,” your next logical step is to find an effective fish oil supplement and start taking it.
Although there is no general consensus from health care practitioners on how much fish oil to take in a day, the recommendation is between 2000mg to 4000mg, unless you have severe depression or Crohn’s disease. Fish oil is not a drug or chemical, so no major side effect has been reported by those that take more than 4000mg.
Smaller side effects have been reported, the most common of which is diarrhea. If you experience this, doctors recommend that you reduce the quantity you take. Another complaint is ‘burping’ or an after taste caused by taking fish oil that is not fresh, so make sure that you take one that is fresh; fresh oil does not have any rancid or fishy smell, but rather has a fresh ocean smell. It is important to avoid rancid fish oil because rancidity increases free radicals in your body, and free radicals cause diseases and premature aging.
Fish oil is a blood thinner, so you need to talk it over with your doctor if you are taking any other blood thinners. It is important to note that how much fish oil you take should depend on the amount of DHA contained in one capsule of the supplement. A good quality supplement should contain at least 250mg of DHA per capsule. In that case, you should take 2-4 capsules a day.
How much fish oil you take shouldn’t be your only concern. You should also worry about contamination due to pollutions in the oceans. To avoid any toxic contamination, be sure to buy supplements that are molecularly distilled to remove impurities.
You should also avoid oil from shark liver because it contains a lot of mercury. Cod liver oil should also be avoided because it contains too much vitamin A, which is harmful in excess, and your body can not get rid of it.