Fish oil is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. If you do not know much about omega-3 fatty acids then let us give you a primer. Omega-3 fatty acid is considered good fat as it delivers several health benefits to the body. The biggest benefit of omega-3 is, of course, the positive effects it has on the body’s cardiovascular health. It also has potent levels of antioxidant, especially when taken with vitamin D. Other benefits include regulating sugar levels, lowering risk of depression, preventing Alzheimer’s disease, treating arthritis, and lowering risk of cancer.
However, there are some who have difficulty consuming fish oil or omega-3 supplements. A recent study showed that some 7% of people who take omega-3 supplements experience acid reflux and other digestive problems. If you are part of this 7% it does not mean that you cannot take fish oil or omega-3 rich foods forever. Far from it, although you will need to take some steps in order to prevent these side effects from occurring. Below are several methods you can use to prevent acid reflux from occurring every time you eat food that contains omega-3 fatty acids.
Take with a Full Stomach
When it comes to taking fish oil supplements it is ideal to take it during or after a meal. Taking fish oil on an empty stomach might cause you to regurgitate it back up through your esophagus due to the fish oil reacting negatively with the bile in your stomach. By taking it during or after a meal you will allow the fish oil to mix in with the food thus helping to prevent acid reflux.
Change Dosage Levels
If you constantly experience acid reflux whenever you take fish oil supplements, even when taking it after a meal then you should look into changing the amount of omega-3 you consume. Take a supplement that offers the lowest dosage available and gradually work your way up to the appropriate daily dosage level. Sometimes you just need to give your body time to adapt to the dosage level. Another technique you can try is by refrigerating or freezing the capsules before taking them as this is known to help prevent acid reflux as well.
Try Looking for an Alternative
If you still have problems taking omega-3 supplements because of acid reflux then try looking at an alternative source. Where better to look for than the main source of this nutrient? Eating seafood such as salmon, sardines, tuna and mackerel can give you the right daily amount of omega-3 fatty acid. If you are not a fan of seafood then another good source of omega-3 fatty acids are seeds such as chia seed, flaxseed oil, ground flax seed, walnuts, canola oil, and soybean oil. The only drawback to this alternative is the fact that omega-3 fatty acids from plants are not as potent as those found in actual seafood.
While it is true that omega-3 fatty acids are essential for the body and are quite safe to take, there are several health issues that you should be aware about when taking fish oil supplements. The biggest factor that you should be aware of is that omega-3 supplements might react negatively when taken with other medications. Those taking blood thinners or insulin should refrain from taking fish oil supplements as doing so might cause unforeseen side effects. At the very least, always consult with a health professional before taking new supplements.