6

votes

fish oil vs fish consumption - can anyone clear up the confusion?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 07, 2012 at 2:22 PM

Ok, so after reading the PHD book a year ago and after reading Chris Kressers blog, I stopped taking supplementary fish oil.

From what I remember, Paul Jaminet even said that there is no actual study that supports the use of fish oil, only real fish consumption. Is that true? I thought there where many studies in which they used the isolated oils and found health benefits?

On the other hand, guys like Lyle McDonald, Alan Aragon, Martin Berkhan (I'd say they're amongst the most respecatable, no-BS people in the dieting world) are advocating fish oils as staple supplements and they always use studies to support their claims.

Is it true that there are no studies supporting fish oil supplementation? I'm all for reducing PUFA but on the other hand, many folks that deal with injuries and inflammation seem to have very good experiences with high doses of fish oil caps.

thanks :)

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 08, 2012
at 05:42 PM

One other thought ... I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop regarding vitamin D supplementation. Yes, there are all sorts of negative associations with low serum D levels, but who knows what the long-term effects are from supplementing thousands of IU a day?

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 08, 2012
at 03:30 PM

What I am saying is that it is not that simple. There are many variables that affect whether or not fish oil would be beneficial or harmful. Some are known, some are unknown. It is probably prudent to look at what's happened with other supplements (like vitamin E) and see that even if early research appears promising, over time we learn that supplementing creates problems too.

1a641bbff1a7b0a70f08410376bbdf6b

(1587)

on January 08, 2012
at 03:16 PM

Haha, you're welcome Isa ;) Thanks a lot for all the answers! :) Personally, I wouldn't take it on a daily basis, I'm more interested in healing some nagging injuries with high doses as some people seem to be quite successful with it!

1a641bbff1a7b0a70f08410376bbdf6b

(1587)

on January 08, 2012
at 03:13 PM

Thanks a lot Beth, so you're saying that there really is no study that proves the effectivness of fish oil, just that it might work?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 08, 2012
at 01:59 PM

There's too much to cover and I do not pretend to be qualifed enough to discuss it.

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 08, 2012
at 01:32 PM

I'm with Chris Kresser in considering cod liver oil a food. That said, I don't take CLO ... I eat 4 oz of liver a week and salmon or tuna nearly every day.

9f54852ea376e8e416356f547611e052

(2957)

on January 08, 2012
at 11:57 AM

It would be helpful if you could provide more than just a link and praise about whatever is behind that link. It's a discussion site, after all.

685e3c967e63b4eacccf02628fd9a3ac

(1026)

on January 08, 2012
at 11:39 AM

It's REALLY hard to replace cod liver oil with food. I'd have to eat real cod liver or lots of liver and salmon to replace it.

50e94d7b6b01e6cb87889c6541adc90c

(813)

on January 07, 2012
at 04:09 PM

I just thought as long as my blood work says: no inflammation going on , may be I should skip the fish oil supplementation ?

50e94d7b6b01e6cb87889c6541adc90c

(813)

on January 07, 2012
at 03:59 PM

ChenZhen, thank you very much for this question. As being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, I've to handle inflammation and whereever I read (especially in the "ms world"), fish oil is highly recommended. But then there are that many voices out there, telling that fish oil is no good. So, I still supplement but with mixed feelings.

  • 1a641bbff1a7b0a70f08410376bbdf6b

    asked by

    (1587)
  • Views
    2K
  • Last Activity
    1279D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

3 Answers

6
7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 07, 2012
at 03:06 PM

Oh, I'm sure that if you did a pubmed search you'd find all sorts of studies "supporting" fish oil. This NIH article uses the words "likely effective" and "possibly effective" for a variety of conditions ... though that's not exactly high praise.

I think the thing with supplements is to generally avoid them if you can get the desired nutrients from food. So, if you're unable (or unwilling) to reduce omega 6 in your diet and/or eat fish to get omega 3s, then by all means take the best fish oil supplement you can.

Keep in mind that while omega 3 is good, oxidized omega 3 is bad ... what are the odds that the pills you're popping are at least partially oxidized? I.e., from sitting on a shelf for however long or from sitting in a hot truck before it got to the store or to you? As an aside, I'm really glad to see that Robb Wolf has gotten off the high-dose bandwagon.

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 08, 2012
at 05:42 PM

One other thought ... I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop regarding vitamin D supplementation. Yes, there are all sorts of negative associations with low serum D levels, but who knows what the long-term effects are from supplementing thousands of IU a day?

685e3c967e63b4eacccf02628fd9a3ac

(1026)

on January 08, 2012
at 11:39 AM

It's REALLY hard to replace cod liver oil with food. I'd have to eat real cod liver or lots of liver and salmon to replace it.

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 08, 2012
at 01:32 PM

I'm with Chris Kresser in considering cod liver oil a food. That said, I don't take CLO ... I eat 4 oz of liver a week and salmon or tuna nearly every day.

1a641bbff1a7b0a70f08410376bbdf6b

(1587)

on January 08, 2012
at 03:13 PM

Thanks a lot Beth, so you're saying that there really is no study that proves the effectivness of fish oil, just that it might work?

7dc950fc76a046048e683d2a27dced37

on January 08, 2012
at 03:30 PM

What I am saying is that it is not that simple. There are many variables that affect whether or not fish oil would be beneficial or harmful. Some are known, some are unknown. It is probably prudent to look at what's happened with other supplements (like vitamin E) and see that even if early research appears promising, over time we learn that supplementing creates problems too.

1
Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 07, 2012
at 03:14 PM

As ever, Beth has a good perspective. The key being in the word supplement I suppose. Most of the recommendations come from the assumption that people don't eat enough fish. If you can afford it as 'insurance' then I doubt there are serious risks, but given a good diet otherwise I'm not sure it'd be a big enough effect to isolate.

0
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 08, 2012
at 11:20 AM

This guy has a lot to say about fish, fish oil and omega 3 supplements. Well worth reading and also listening to the interviews. link text

9f54852ea376e8e416356f547611e052

(2957)

on January 08, 2012
at 11:57 AM

It would be helpful if you could provide more than just a link and praise about whatever is behind that link. It's a discussion site, after all.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 08, 2012
at 01:59 PM

There's too much to cover and I do not pretend to be qualifed enough to discuss it.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!