Fish Oil & Cod Liver Oil (EPA & DHA)
While those with heart disease and diabetes have often been reported to benefit from supplementation with fish oil,215, 216 both groups should check with their doctor before taking more than 3 grams of fish oil per day for several months. Elevations in blood sugar and cholesterol levels may occur in some people who take fish oil.217
The increase in blood sugar appears to be related in part to the amount of fish oil used.218 The impairment of sugar metabolism sometimes caused by supplementation with fish oil has been prevented by the addition of half an hour of moderate exercise three times a week.219
While supplementation with fish oil consistently lowers triglycerides, the effect of fish oil on LDL (“bad”) cholesterol varies, and in some people, fish oil supplementation has been reported to increase LDL levels.220
There has been one case report in which a woman with a known allergy to crabs developed a severe allergic reaction after ingesting fish oil.221
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The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2015.