The Big Catch: Fish Oil & Why You Should Be Hooked On It
When it comes to having a healthy diet, I’m not too keen on eating fish or taking loads of supplements. But here’s one topic where I make an exception. Whether you’re looking to get strong, lose weight or you’re just trying to live a healthy lifestyle, fish oil is essential.
FISH ARE FRIENDS…AND FOOD!
Fish Oil = Good Fats (or EFA’s)
Essential Fatty Acids (or EFA’s) are the monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that contain essential fats. That’s big science talk for “there good-for-you fats”.
Now, I get it, most people hear the word “fat” and take off running in the other direction. But EFA’s are different. These poly or mono unsaturated fats lower cholesterol as well as optimizing other bodily functions.
The hard part with EFA’s is that our bodies don’t naturally produce them. Therefore, they need to be supplied through our diet. Here are some easy ways to get EFA’s through food only.
- Nuts: Walnuts, Pecans, Almonds
- Flax Seed
- Soybean Oil
- Sunflower Oil
- Safflower Oil
- Natural Peanut Butter
- Olivs and Olive Oil
Omega 6 & Omega 3’s – The 2 Types Of EFA’s
It’s more common that we’ll eat more Omega 6 Fatty Acids than Omega 3’s. This is because foods that are common in our diet – like certain grains, some veggie oils and processed foods – contain Omega 6’s. Omega 3’s on the other hand, are found in less common foods, like salmon, flaxseed, sardines and cruciferous veggies.
Omega 3’s – Good For Weight-loss
There are a lot of benefits to consuming Omega 3’s. First, Omega 3 EFA’s stabilize your insulin levels. Having stable insulin levels will help us better store simple sugars as energy for muscles, instead of storing them as fat cells.
Secondly, fish oil helps preserve muscle, which is great for those who can’t workout regularly. Having a good level of Omega 3’s will help your body hold on to muscle gains longer.
Lastly, our bodies use Omega 3’s to burn fat by aiding and boosting our metabolism.
So what’s better? Whole Fish vs Fish Oil
Now, you wouldn’t think there would be much of a difference between the 2, as long as you were getting the EFA’s in, right? Well, turns out your body might not be effectively consuming and, to a bigger point,
holding onto the EFA’s. In other words, if your body isn’t absorbing it, it’s disposing of it.
There have been many studies on what kinds of nutrients our bodies absorb better, and almost all of them are conclusive. Our bodies do better at absorbing and utilizing nutrients coming from whole foods than with supplements.
Fish Oils have been study specifically in whether supplements or whole fish are better for us to get our EFA’s. Most of these studies conclude that eating fish is better for us to take in the nutrients. However, for all you non-fish eaters, studies have also shown that taking fish oil supplements with a high fat meal will improve the ability to absorb vitamins and EFA’s
So Here’s The Deal:
Our bodies need EFA’s, one way or another. By now, we understand that eating whole fish or foods that are high in EFA’s is the better way to ensure you absorb the nutrients. But if you’re not a fan of fish, taking high quality Fish Oil supplements daily, with a high fat meal, will help you reap the benefits. Sooner or later, you’ll be hooked on the fat-burning and muscle-keeping wins the glorious fish-oil brings!
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