What Is Fish Oil Good For?
What is fish oil good for? The answer lies in omega-3 fatty acids, they key component of fish oil that is responsible for numerous health benefits. Fish oil improves the human immune system, prevents heart diseases, and promotes a positive mental state. Regular intake of fish oil goes a long way in keeping the body healthy.
Your choice of fish oil is as important as taking it regularly. It must be derived from a pure fish source, containing high levels of the essential fatty acids DHA and EPA. It must also contain high amounts of antioxidants so that the fatty acids do not get oxidised in the body. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals and play a key role in maintaining good health.
Moreover, the manufacturing process of the fish oil must be taken into consideration, as intense heat destroys these fragile lipids and the vital nutrients contained in the oil. Last but most importantly, the manufacturer must guarantee the purity of the oil, i.e. the manufacturing process must ensure that toxic substances like mercury, heavy metals and PCBs have been removed from the fish oil.
Fish oil is obtained from oily fish like salmon, halibut, tuna, etc. It enhances the development of the brain and nervous system, and is helpful in treating cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, cancer and various other disorders. It lowers levels of triglycerides in the bloodstream, decreases the possibility of heart attacks, stabilizes abnormal heart rhythms, reduces the danger of strokes, slows down the formation of atherosclerotic plaques, and maintains blood pressure.
It can be used to treat arthritis, depression, diabetes, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. It also reduces hyperactivity and ADHD. Fish oil prevents skin cancer as omega-3 fatty acids strengthen cell walls, preventing the damage of DNA by cancerous agents. It is also helpful in treating skin diseases like psoriasis.
The question what is fish oil good for remains easily answered, but there are risks involved. Biomagnification has resulted in high amounts of toxins accumulating in fish. Thus, one should make sure that the fish oil is purified of harmful substances during the manufacturing process. Another alternative is to opt for fish oil supplements that are guaranteed to be free of contaminants.
If the fish oil in your diet comes from cooked fish, then the way the fish is cooked is also important. It is best to bake, broil or steam the fish that is to be consumed. Frying the fish can prove to be dangerous as the omega-3 fatty acids break down at very high temperatures and fried items add to blood cholesterol levels. Hence, the method of cooking needs to be taken into consideration as well.
Fish oil also contains other important nutrients such as vitamin A. Vitamin A or retinol is essential for good vision and proper immune function. It has a key role in various other metabolic functions, including the regulation of antioxidants, maintaining proper bone structure, promoting cellular health, and in reproduction and embryonic development. It is also required for haematopoiesis, i. e. formation of the cellular components of blood, as well as for transcription of genes.
Cod liver oil is similar to fish oil, but contains greater amounts of vitamin A and vitamin D. Consumption of cod liver oil relieves pain and stiffness of joints in patients suffering from arthritis. It also benefits the heart, and strengthens bones, apart from helping in the repair of damaged hair, nails and skin. It is also used in the long term treatment of people suffering from multiple sclerosis. Intake of cod liver oil by pregnant women reduces the risk of diabetes in the infant. It also increases levels of fatty acids and vitamin A in breast milk, which help enhance brain development and help to fight infections respectively. A recent study shows that cod liver oil reduces risk of cancer, especially lung cancer.