Fish oil supplements

Fish oil supplements

Find reliable independent health and treatment information about fish oil supplements written by Australian experts. This includes resources for consumers and health professionals.

About fish oil supplements

Fish oil supplements are a complementary medicine used by many Australians.

Fish oil supplements contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are important nutrients that our body needs for growth, development, building and repair. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in many foods, including oily fish, lean grass-fed red meat, poultry, omega-3 enriched eggs, fortified bread and milk, as well as certain plant and nut oils (eg, flaxseed, linseed, canola, walnut).

Fish oil supplements may be useful if you are not getting enough omega-3 fatty acids from your diet. They may also be recommended if you have certain health conditions such as high blood triglycerides or rheumatoid arthritis.

For some health conditions the clinical evidence is mixed or has changed over time, so possible benefits from taking fish oil supplements are still unclear.

Fish oil supplements do not have many known side effects. However, high doses of fish oil supplements may interact with medicines used to reduce blood clotting, which can make bruising and bleeding more likely.

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For health professionals  

Fish oil supplements contain high doses of the long-chain omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).

They may be useful for people who cannot meet the dietary recommendations for fish intake, as well as for some people with hypertriglyceridaemia or rheumatoid arthritis.

Recent systematic reviews have questioned the cardiovascular benefits of fish oil supplements beyond hypertriglyceridaemia.

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Latest information - fish oil supplements


09 Dec 2014 Marine-based products (marine oils) also provide omega-3 fatty acids. Find out more.
09 Dec 2014 Eating oily fish 2 or 3 times a week as part of a healthy diet is recommended for cardiovascular health.
09 Dec 2014 Fish oil is a medicine, and like any medicine can have side effects. Make sure to keep your doctor and pharmacist informed of all medicines you take, even complementary and non-prescription medicines.
09 Dec 2014 Read how fish oils may help to reduce symptom severity in people with rheumatoid arthritis.
09 Dec 2014 Fish oils supplements come in capsule & liquid forms. Their main active ingredients are the long-chain fatty acids - EPA & DHA. Read more
09 Dec 2014 Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for the health of our body & brain. Rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids include fish, red meat, poultry, & certain plant and nut oils.
09 Dec 2014 Recent studies of fish oil supplements have found that it's unlikely they help reduce heart attacks or strokes in people who already have cardiovascular problems.
09 Dec 2014 As the number of studies looking at fish oil increases, what we thought we knew about the effect of fish oil has changed.
09 Dec 2014 The amount of omega-3 fatty acid your body needs each day depends on age, gender, health status and what other medicines you use.
For health professionals (Health professional publication)
17 Jul 2013 Dietary factors have been suggested to influence prostate cancer risk, but as yet there is not sufficient evidence to support this