5 Important Things Studies Tell Us About The Health Benefits Of Krill Oil
When it comes to krill, whales and penguins can’t get enough of this tiny crustacean, and it seems they’re on to something. These days, krill oil is also being touted as the best choice when it comes to choosing a fish oil supplement. As an excellent source of marine sourced omega-3 fats, it contains docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). This is a look at the five most important things studies tell us about the health benefits of krill oil. (1,2)
1. Krill Oil Contains EPA And DHA
Only marine sourced omega-3 fats contain EPA and DHA. Krill is believed to be the smarter choice as studies show it could be easier to absorb than fish fats stored in triglycerides. Krill is found in phospholipid molecules which are more easily absorbed into the bloodstream, so you can increase omega-3 levels more effectively. Krill oil contains the same amounts of EPA and DHA in fish oils. However, further studies will help establish if it is more effective than other types of fish oils. (3,4,5,6)
2. Krill Oil Could Help Joint Pain
Painful conditions such as arthritis and joint pain are often caused by inflammation. One study looked at the potential anti-inflammatory properties of krill oil and found patients with rheumatoid or osteoarthritis experienced a reduction in. (7,8)
- Functional impairment
Another study found patients with mild knee pain experienced less pain when standing and sleeping after 30 days of taking krill oil. They also enjoyed an increase in range of motion. (9)
3. Krill Oil Fights Inflammation
As mentioned above, omega-3 fatty acids work as an anti-inflammatory. Because it might be easier to absorb, krill could be a better choice to help fight inflammation. As well, krill contains astaxanthin, which adds to its anti-inflammatory effects. According to one study, when harmful bacteria were present in human intestinal cells, krill oil helped reduce the production of the molecules that cause inflammation. (7,10,11)
Research showed that taking 1,000 mg of krill oil supplements daily reduced inflammation more effectively than 2,000 mg of purified omega-3s. In addition, another study showed taking just 300 mg daily over one month reduced inflammation by as much as 30%. (7)
4. Krill Oil Can Help With PMS Symptoms
Managing inflammation and pain comes in handy for women suffering from PMS symptoms. Many studies are showing that fish oil supplements can help manage PMS-related pain, with many patients finding they could reduce pain medications. (7,12,13,14,15,16,17)
5. Krill Oil May Support Heart Health
As mentioned, omega-3 fats contain DHA and EPA which have been shown to be heart healthy. Research findings show fish and krill oil may: (18,19,20)
- Improve blood lipid levels
- Lower levels of triglycerides
- Lower other blood fats
However, only krill oil raised “good” high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol while effectively lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Krill oils also significantly improved the function of the lining of the blood vessels compared to olive oil. (21,22)
Although more studies are always underway, these findings are hopeful to help reduce risk factors for heart disease.
Why Choose Krill Oil?
If you want an easy way to add more omega-3s, EPA, and DHA to your daily health regimen, krill oil supplements are a good option. Krill oil in capsule form is smaller than most fish oil capsules, making them easier to swallow. If you find fish oil capsules leave a fishy taste in your mouth, or worse, cause belching, you are less likely to have these issues with krill oil. For those concerned about the environment, krill reproduce quickly, making them the more sustainable option. You also get the benefit of astaxanthin, providing an inflammation reducing effect you won’t get with fish oil.
Recommended Daily Dose Of Krill Oil
Although there isn’t really an ideal dose for krill oil at the moment, an intake of 250–500 mg per day of DHA and EPA combined is most commonly recommended. You should never take more than 5,000 mg of EPA and DHA combined per day. Keep in mind this includes intake from your diet. Always consult your doctor before taking supplements. Though they are naturally sourced, they can still interact with medications or cause issues for those with certain health conditions.
Who Should Avoid Krill Oil?
If you have a seafood allergy, both krill and fish oils should be avoided. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, taking blood thinners, or preparing for surgery, krill oil should be avoided. Omega-3 fats can have an anti-clotting effect if you exceed the recommended dosage.
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