We examine the link between fish oil and cholesterol and how this can keep the risk of stroke and heart attack at bay ...
by Nikki Langmead, a psychologist and professional natural-cure health writer, published in various ezines for over half a decade.
Fish oil supplements are among the most common and popular health products sold in the market. Several clinical trials have confirmed the numerous health benefits of EPA and DHA contained in these supplements. Fish oil is remarkably beneficial in lowering the risk of cardio vascular and coronary disorders, relieving inflammation of the joints and improving concentration and focus. Here is a look at the link between fish oil and cholesterol and how regular use of fish oil can keep the risk of stroke and heart attack at bay.
In order to understand the link between fish oil and cholesterol, it is essential to find out more about what cholesterol is; how it's used in the body and its harmful effects.
Au contraire to popular belief, not all types of cholesterol predispose a person to the risk of heart attack and stroke, As a matter of fact, good cholesterol performs vital functions in the body and is used to repair cellular membranes, produce hormones and neurons, etc.
So, it is not the total cholesterol level in the body, rather the level of bad cholesterol that increases the risk of cardiovascular and coronary ailments. Cholesterol is carried to the various parts of the body through the help of particles known as lipoproteins. These particles are a combination of lipids (fats) and proteins, hence the name.
Ideally, lipoproteins should have a higher amount of protein and lower amount of fat, this combination is known as high density lipoprotein (HDL) while particles with more fat and less protein are called LDL (low density lipoproteins). While the cholesterol that adheres to these particles is the same, LDL clogs the blood vessels restricting the flow of blood to vital organs such as kidneys, the brain etc, increasing the risk of stroke.
Fish oils is a rich source of Omega 3 fatty acids, the DHA/EPA in fish soil supplements helps to lower the amount of LDL in the body while boosting the amount of HDL in the blood stream. This prevents arterial blockage and stabilizes the blood pressure.
Research has also revealed that Omega 3 fatty acids prevent the hardening of arterial walls, a condition that often leads to ruptured blood vessels and life threatening internal bleeding.
Fish oil supplements also help in lowering the level of triglycerides in the blood stream; these fats are associated with the amount of cholesterol in the blood stream. Hence, Omega 3 fatty acids also help to lower the risk of heart attack.
While the FDA does not make any recommendations about the dosage of fish oil, the AHA (American Heart association) advises people suffering from high triglycerides to consume about 4000 mg of fish oil per day. On the other hand, the dosage has to be reduced to 1000 mg for coronary artery diseases.
If you want to buy fish oil supplements, it is imperative to choose clinical grade products. The fish oil used in these supplements is of the highest quality and purification, so you do not have to worry about natural and manmade pollutants including DDT, lead and mercury in it.
Also, high quality fish oil is stable at higher temperatures so you will not experience some of the side effects associated with the consumption of these supplements such as fishy after taste, burps, flatulence and bloating.
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