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hypervitaminosis A from fish oil

I recently read an article that said there was danger of getting too much vit-A from fish oil supplementation. From nutrition class I learned
vit-A has some nasty side effects if you take in too much. I take 20 one gram gelcaps(Sam’s club)to get 6 grams of dha/epa. Is this seriously a concern? Should I use a source with a higher content of dha/epa per cap? By the way, I think supplementing with fish oil has made a very positive difference for me, both physically and psychologically(improved brain function?) Thanks. YG

The gel caps that you are taking do not pose a risk of vitamin A toxicity. The fish oil supplement that these people are talking about is cod liver oil which is used primarily as a vit A and D supplement but also contains some EPA/DHA. If you are taking the caps, you’ll be ok. Just watch out for the cod liver oil.

They say that you should consult a doctor before going over 30,000iu per day of vitamin A. But considering what most doctors know about nutrition, I wouldn’t waste my time. Vitamin A doesn’t become toxic until you take over 300,000 iu per day, for a 200lb man. So don’t worry about a bit of fish oil.

More BS. You should be so lucky to find fish oil with that much Vitamin A.

The problem is cod liver oil, not salmon oil. If you’re taking the cod liver oil then be careful, theres some articles about this in dr mercola.com, in one of them he says theres has been studies that have shown that it is ok to consume a lot more vitamin A than the RDA for large periods of time with no adverse efects, but he advises people wich get a lot of sun exposure to be careful with the cod liver oil due to the vitamin D content.

Go there and do a search on fish oils and cod liver oil, i think if its salmon oil you’re taking you don’t have to worry about any of that.

Fish oil caps = good

cod liver oil = bad

I read on the Merck website that Vitamin A becomes toxic with chronic intake of >100,000IU/daily. Two tbsp. of cod liver oil, which provides about 6 grams of EPA/DHA, provides around 40,000 IU of vitamin A. Ergo, 2 or even 3 tbsp. of cod liver oil a day is fine.

The toxicity of vitamin A is extremely variable depending on who you listen to. It is known to be the most toxic vitamin in excessive doseages and can definately cause liver damage much the same way as oral steriods along with other side effects including hair loss. When consuming large doses, I’m guessing it is like everything else in the way some can tolerate more than others before problems occur. The thing about vitamin A is that as an oil soluble vitamin, excess is not excreted in urine but builds up to higher and higher levels in the body and it is the long term chronic high levels that cause problems - just like with oral steriods which have a higher liklehood of causing problems with the longer the cycle. So there are 2 different toxic doses of vitamin A - the toxic large 1 time dose and the chronic long term daily dose. A smaller dose over a longer period can cause more problems than a single larger dose. And that is why you see different values for vitamin A toxicity from different sources. It depends on whether they are referencing a single toxic dose or chronic long term safe dose. Personally, I wouldn’t risk stressing my liver over insisting on using cod liver oil when fish oil is cheap.