"I've never been much of a believer in supplements. However, after repeated invitations from my wife I started taking Omega 3 Fish Oil. Consequently, my cholesteral levels have improved and I've never felt so healthy."
- Eric B.
"Since I started supplementing with high-dose fish oil nearly 8 months ago my skin has not been nearly so dry, my allergies have almost entirely gone away and my general health appears to be improving."
"After one month of taking fish oil, my husband starting noticing positive changes in the texture of his hair, and his blood sugar levels were dramatically stabilizing, as he is a type 1 diabetic (for the past 27 years)."
What you need to know before buying Fish Oil Supplements
There are hundreds of different brands of fish oil products on the market. Trying to choose between them can be very confusing – to say the least. Here are some suggestions to help you in your search for a good product at a reasonable price.
1. Enteric Coating Softgels – These capsules are coated with a special coating that protect the fish oil from the harsh acids in the stomach. These capsules are designed to remain intact until they reach the small intestine. It is estimated that the enteric coating increases the effectiveness of the fish oil product by up to 3X. Another benefit to the enteric coating is that it virtually eliminates the unpleasant aftertaste and odor typically associated with fish oil supplement
2. Extracted at Low Temperatures - Fish oils produced by a low temperature process have less oxidation will be more stable than cheaper products that are extracted using harsh solvents.
3. EPA and DHA Levels - These Omega-3 fatty acids are the main reason for taking fish oil supplements, so make sure your product contains high levels of these nutrients. Typically, they are found in a 2:1 ratio in most products. One trick that manufacturers commonly use is to claim higher levels by increasing the serving size. We break down the EPA and DHA levels per capsule of common supplements on our product comparison page.
4. Molecular Distillation – This process removes heavy metals, PCB's, dioxins, pesticides and other unwanted compounds. This is very important and most manufacturers are now doing this.
5. Pricing Considerations - Let’s be frank, the idea that “you get what you pay for” is a myth. The truth is that often health products are marketed by network marketing (multi-level) companies and are priced too high. You need to look at several products produced by major health manufacturers and try to get an idea of what price at which the respected health industry sells the products. If you see a price drastically lower, then you probably are getting what you pay for: worthless junk. If however, the price is drastically higher, it is probably a multi-level marketing company or a company trying a slick advertising campaign trying to sell a basic supplement at above a premium price.
For instance, we know of one product that retails at about $15 and is produced by many respected health manufacturers. However, there is one lousy company that sells that same product for $75 and advertises that their product is more expensive because it is the best. The reality is that the more expensive product is produced in the exact same factory and same product line as the products priced more reasonably.
Don’t be afraid to pay more for a product if it is produced by a respectable company and is in line with the prices charged by other competing health companies. If a product is good, then a version of it will be available from several health companies. If a product claims to be “unique” or “one-of-a-kind” then it probably doesn’t work.
6. Check Consumer Reivews - Try to find an independent, unbiased review of the product you are interested in. If you find a review on a web site that sells that product, it is probably biased and you should ignore it. After all, a company that is trying to sell products is not going to post negative reviews about them.
You need to be able to trust the company from which you are buying products. Otherwise, you are wasting your time and money. The better known and respected health companies are better known and respected for a reason. They are usually very concerned with their image and reputation and are going to be able put the money into research and purchasing high quality raw ingredients. Their quality control will be better, and you will be able to trust their products.