Fish Oil Recommendations Revisited

Hey guys -

I coulda sworn that I saw a posting on this before, but I can’t find it now.

Anyway, I’m looking for recommendations on which fish oil capsules people supplement with. Can someone post the link to the original thread??

I use both brands from Costco.

Two with each meal: 1 regular strength and 1 extra strength.

Otherwise, the ES gets a bit expensive.

Okay…

To me, this is a BIG topic, since Biotest is currently thinking about their own EFA supplement, and because of it’s importance to our overall health.

I currently am using two:

  1. Dr. Sear’s “Omega RX” with Vitamin E, and

  2. LEF DHA/EPA with Sesame Ligans

Each cap of OmegaRX contains 20 I.U. of Vitamin E. This amount of the vitamin is supposed to prevent any depletion of your internal Vitamin E stores that occurs as a result of oxidation of the oil. In addition, all the fish oil has undergone molecular distillation. This process removes any residual PCB’s that are found in all fish oils.

The Sesame Ligans in the LEF supplement are meant to inhibit the enzyme (delta-5-desaturase) that causes dietary fats to be converted into arachidonic acid, a precursor to the toxic inflammatory factors prostaglandin E2 and leukotriene B4.

Now, the question is this:

Are the Vit. E and Sesame Ligans a lot of “Bells-and-Whistles”?

How about the molecular distillation? (with as many as we take, I would think not…)

(Of course, the cost is much greater than say the Costco, etc.)

Maybe I’ll see if Cy can weigh in on this one…

Mufasa

[quote]Mufasa wrote:
Okay…

To me, this is a BIG topic, since Biotest is currently thinking about their own EFA supplement, and because of it’s importance to our overall health.

I currently am using two:

  1. Dr. Sear’s “Omega RX” with Vitamin E, and

  2. LEF DHA/EPA with Sesame Ligans

Each cap of OmegaRX contains 20 I.U. of Vitamin E. This amount of the vitamin is supposed to prevent any depletion of your internal Vitamin E stores that occurs as a result of oxidation of the oil. In addition, all the fish oil has undergone molecular distillation. This process removes any residual PCB’s that are found in all fish oils.

The Sesame Ligans in the LEF supplement are meant to inhibit the enzyme (delta-5-desaturase) that causes dietary fats to be converted into arachidonic acid, a precursor to the toxic inflammatory factors prostaglandin E2 and leukotriene B4.

Now, the question is this:

Are the Vit. E and Sesame Ligans a lot of “Bells-and-Whistles”?

How about the molecular distillation? (with as many as we take, I would think not…)

(Of course, the cost is much greater than say the Costco, etc.)

Maybe I’ll see if Cy can weigh in on this one…

Mufasa
[/quote]

Hi Mufasa, T-Magmod informed me my name was called. I’ll start with the preemptive, this isn’t an area I’ve spent a great deal of time looking in to, but I’ll lend what I can.

The concurrent use of the Vitamin E actually has some merit to it. Although, I don’t see any reason you can’t supplement with your own vitamin E.

As for the sesamin and so forth, there’s some data in animal models which actually supports those statements. However, I don’t know that I’d say it’s a great idea to want to eliminate arachidonate all together. All too often it seems people want to take a biologically active molecule and view it as “good” or “bad” when that’s really not the case and going a bit further beyond that, it’s assuming we know all there is about a particular molecule’s function, which isn’t really being honest with one’s self.

In those with certain conditions, absolutely, it could be of a particular benefit, but I don’t know that I would instantly apply that to the normal population.

Anyhow, I think a better idea would be to help limit arachidonate or use better substrates (as you’re doing by supplementing with omega 3 fatty acids) which lead to the formation of less active leukotriene and prostaglandin derivatives. With a fair amount of arachidonate in brain phospholipids and potential roles as a regulator in certain transcription factors (e.g., NFkappaB), this indicates some potential, very important roles. So, again, I think it’s a good idea to avoid vilifying biological molecules. Here’s a good paper: http://www.jbc.org/cgi/reprint/272/39/24679

As for the molecular distillation, I believe this has some merit. Distillation is an invaluable method of separation and in this particular case, appears to be a good means of (PCB’s and such aside) achieving a high concentration of the molecules we’re after. From the reports I’ve seen of the less concentrated products, in terms of contamination, it’s probably not an absolute necessity, but something which doesn’t hurt to pay for, in my opinion.

THANKS for weighing-in Cy!

A couple of things:

  1. I think that the larger cost in Dr. Sear’s supplement comes from the Molecular Distillation. With as much of the Omega-3’s as are being recommended these days, I’m glad you agree that it’s a process with some validity.

  2. Dr. Sears ALSO recommends monitoring your AA/EPA ratio (which can be done rather inexpensively by certain labs…a search can finds those for you…)

You start by supplementing at a certain level (depending on your health and whether you suffer from chronic disease)…and ADJUST your supplements from there (I think that he recommends every three months or so…)

He feels that this is a good way to monitor AA and EPA, so that we don’t take an important molecule (AA) to levels that may be harmful.

Again, thanks! I really feel like this is an important area…

Mufasa

I believe Dr Sears Omega RX Zone is one of the best “Diet” books out there. I am taking 12 caps a day.

There are some pros and cons regarding Molecular Distillation. The process removes contaminants, but it also does some bad things. Basically they heat or boil the oils at extremely high temperatures - while this gets rid of contaminants- it also destroys some of the benifits of taking/eating the oils. IE the cooking, alters the make up of the oil. Check out the Udo Erasmus site for more info on this. He has a more technical explanation of the process.

Studies about ingesting the contaminants are mixed at best. There is nothing that conclusively states that contaminants contained in the oils are in sufficient concentration to be harmful. That said, some people are adamant about toxins. Make your own choice.

Many of us (including Lonnie Lowery) take the Omega 3 available at Sam’s Club. It’s the Members Mark brand, they are dirt cheap.

I SURE hope that the guys at “Biotest” are researching all these Pro’s and Con’s…and come up with what amounts to an almost “ideal” supplement…

It’s all confusing what is important and what isn’t…

Mufasa

Like Atreides, I take the Costco brand. It has tested free of contaminants, and the enterically coated form has high potency (the other isn’t bad either). That’s good enough for me. And yes, I also supplement with Vit E (among others).

Molecular distillation, amongst its other names is an exact method employed when you’re dealing with compounds that are sensitive to high and prolonged heat exposure. From what I’ve been told, it is somewhat costly, however. It’s also important to remember that a phase change doesn’t necessarily mean you’re altering the structure of the molecule. If there were truly an alteration in the structure, forming another molecule, you’d get a lower yield. More importantly, it seems analytical techniques are employed thereafter so the probability of having new compounds included, doesn’t seem high to me.

On a personal note, I use the Spring Valley brand from Walmart. The “extra strength” version with the ethyl ester derivatives.

I take 8 to 12 caps per day of PBL’s PureOmega-3 Fish Oil.

“WALLY WORLD!!!”

(I KNEW Cy Wilson was a good man!)

Mufasa

8-12 Nutri-west “Super EPA” which is a combo EPA/DHA. It’s sad that I go through a bottle a week, at least it’s cheap (and distilled!).

I have to say that when summer rolls around, taking in a lot of EPA/DHA seems to have the following effects as to when I’m not taking any:

I don’t get sunburned, odd but true.

I seem to have a LOT more energy, I normally do a lot of stuff outside, and out here in the DRY climate, it’s usually pretty taxing, but when I’m up on my fish oil, its all good!

I burp fishyness

less blemishes on skin.

I may be crazy, but I swear all that’s true. Does anyone else have interesting stuff they’ve experienced when taking lots of fish oil?

I use Pro Source’s Omega-1250. Each capsule contains 450 mg EPA and 300 mg DHA. I take about 7 capsules per day.

Anyone out there take liquid cod liver oil? I generally try to swallow a tablespoon a day but I have no idea if this provides sufficient n-3’s. I also eat a 3.75 oz can of sardines in water a day. Once again I have no idea of FA profile for these little fishies! Any help would be appreciated.

[quote]CU AeroStallion wrote:
8-12 Nutri-west “Super EPA” which is a combo EPA/DHA. It’s sad that I go through a bottle a week, at least it’s cheap (and distilled!).

I have to say that when summer rolls around, taking in a lot of EPA/DHA seems to have the following effects as to when I’m not taking any:

I don’t get sunburned, odd but true.

I seem to have a LOT more energy, I normally do a lot of stuff outside, and out here in the DRY climate, it’s usually pretty taxing, but when I’m up on my fish oil, its all good!

I burp fishyness

less blemishes on skin.

I may be crazy, but I swear all that’s true. Does anyone else have interesting stuff they’ve experienced when taking lots of fish oil?[/quote]

There’s actually some supportive data regarding the resistance to sunburn. As a note to everyone else though, it’s not a substitute for sunscreen and avoiding excessive sun exposure.

Here’s a good paper:

http://carcin.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/24/5/919#B17

Also, if one has full-text access, the following is a great review: Annu Rev Nutr. 2004;24:173-200.

[quote]Cy Willson wrote:
On a personal note, I use the Spring Valley brand from Walmart. The “extra strength” version with the ethyl ester derivatives.[/quote]

Wow, me too. I nice to know that even on a tight budget I can “use what the pro’s use.” :slight_smile:

I’ve been trying to gulp down a tablespoon of cod liver oil every day, and the one I’m taking claims to have 500mg DHA and 500 mg EPA per tablespoon. It just tastes absolutely horrendous. Almost brings tears to my eyes. I also take the Costco enteric caps at work.

Yeah Cy, I’ve come across that reference, as well.

Here’s another:
Jackson, M., et al. Proc Nutr Soc. 2002 May;61(2):187-9.

Interesting. The n-3 fatty acids appear to reduce the inflammatory/ cytokine reactions to ultraviolet light in the skin. Definitely not a substitute for sunscreen, though, I agree!

I think some of us have discussed this before.

Hey, for those wanting more on what goes into a targeted fatty acid blend for our population, I did a pretty thorough lit review in an upcoming article. After digging through literature, in part for TP, how could I not coordinate it into an article?

I hope it clarifies a few things despite its “chewiness”.

I’m having a Biochemistry friend of mine look more into the Molecular Distillation issue and “altering” of the beneficial EPA/DHA.

As Cy said, I doubt that there is significant activity loss.

Again, Dr. Sears has followed TOO many people as they have followed their AA/EPA ratios. After beginning supplementation, there has been noted significant change in their ratios for the better. This would seem to go against a product losing it’s activity.

But I’m still researching!

Mufasa