PlusEPA fish oil and depression

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 06, 2011 at 5:23 AM

A woman at the health food store told me PlusEPA fish oil helps immensely with mood and depression. Nordic Naturals also seems like a high quality brand. Has anyone tried either of these brands and/ or had success with them/ other fish oil brands and depression?



on May 10, 2011
at 04:05 AM

Hey Danielle. Does alcohol have an unpleasant and unfun effect on you? Write back please, best, Charlie



on April 06, 2011
at 09:54 PM

I've noticed no difference before or after. But then, I'm also not the depressed type.



on April 06, 2011
at 10:35 AM

I generally try not to get advice from the woman at the health food store - I'd probably wind up vegan!

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3 Answers



on April 06, 2011
at 07:55 AM

Here is the real issue. The main study cited for the amazingness of EPA supplements showed that if you give DHA alone you do not get an anti-depressive effect but if you take EPA alone you do. And then they try to extrapolate that to he conclusion that we need high dose EPA supplements or else we will be sad and sorry. But this only demonstrates that we need some EPA. It doesn't follow that we need a whole lot of it and certainly not more than we have of DHA. EPA is important but we want mostly DHA. Look at the fat composition of fish and brains and note that DHA usually outnumbers EPA by a ratio of 4:1 and when you look at what we really need, it is a good deal more DHA than we can get from the EPA-centric supplements.

So I like eating fatty fish, salmon, or taking a high-quality fish oil with more DHA than EPA.

Also important is avoiding omega 6. The amazing Emily Deans explains in her article here http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evolutionary-psychiatry/201103/depression-caused-inflammation-thus-other-diseases-civilization

Also her main blog for more ways to not be sad http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.com/

But maybe we do benefit from more EPA. I haven't seen evidence that we just need so very much of it and I don't see how paleo man would have obtained that much of it, but it could be the case that we benefit from more. If I take one definitive stance on the issue it is that we need plenty of DHA as well as some EPA and as Dr. Deans writes, reducing inflammation is paramount.


on April 06, 2011
at 12:34 PM

I eat tuna or salmon almost daily, however my Dr. still recommended a fish oil supplement... I recently had full blood tests done (inc. hormone) & my B12 and folate levels were god but vit. D was low. im was also advised to take a vitamin D supplement...



on April 06, 2011
at 02:05 PM

Doesn't stuff like this fall under the 5-nines rule?

That is, "99.999% of what you hear at the {gym, health food store} is bullshit."

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