Weight Loss

Too Much Omega 3 Does It Hurt? Do You Have Side Effects?

Omega 3 fatty acids are known as healthy fats found in fish like salmon, for example. The human body is able to produce many of the fats needed by it, but this is not the case with omega 3, which needs to be ingested through food or supplements.

The increased intake of the substance in the diet may be indicated to help deal with a number of conditions such as: high cholesterol, depression, inflammation, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, diabetes, arthritis, infertility, inflammatory bowel disease, Alzheimer's disease, macular degeneration, and skin problems such as psoriasis and eczema.

Support for weight loss, a healthy pregnancy, athletic recovery and thickening of the nails and hair have also been linked to omega 3.

On the other hand, the deficiency of omega 3, common in industrialized countries and in people who consume many processed foods and hydrogenated oils or follow a vegan or vegetarian diet, causes problems such as poor memory, dry skin, heart problems, mood changes, joint pain, and illness autoimmune.

Not to mention that a survey conducted at Harvard University pointed to the deficiency in the substance officially as one of the top 10 causes of deaths in the United States.

But is too much omega 3 bad?

There is no recommended daily value for omega 3 intake, however, the appropriate intake rate of the substance for males is g per day and for women it is g per day. We are talking about grams of omega 3 in fact, active principle, not the grams of oil that contains omega 3.

But is it that overcoming this limit and ingesting, through food and / or supplements, too much omega 3 does it harm?

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Fish oil is a concentrated form of omega 3, which has been linked to cancer by a research in the year 2013.

The study in question was published in theJournal of the National Cancer Institute(Journal of the National Cancer Institute, free translation) and showed that men who consumed the largest amount of fish oil had 71% more chance of having high-grade prostate cancer and a 43% increase in the chances of developing all types of prostate cancer, he said. site.

It is also worth noting that, according to the publication, the survey was conducted with , 27 men, of whom 38% already had prostate cancer.

Researcher at the Ohio State University Medical Center in the United States, Theodore Brasky finds it a bit dangerous the cases of men who consume mega doses of fish oil supplements, ie he believes that, in excess, omega 3 does bad.

Most doctors believe that more than 2 g per day of omega 3 is a mega dose, while the American Heart Association understands that consuming up to 3 g of oil of fish a day is safe, but advises that patients should only take more than 3 g of omega 3 by means of capsules if they are counting on the follow-up of the doctor.

The question of the balance between omega 3 and omega 6

For Dr. Ax, you should not stop taking fish oil because of the study, however, it is necessary to be careful with the daily dosage of the supplement and the brand that produces it.

The page further warned that the reason why fish oil may raise a man's chances of developing prostate cancer is imbalance - the immune system does not work very well when the diet is excessive in omega 3 because the body needs both omega 3 as omega 6.

While omega 3 suppresses inflammation, omega 6 promotes inflammation, which, however strange seems to aid the body's natural defense system with regard to the activation of the white blood cells of the blood.

White blood cells are important to our body because they help fight infections by attacking bacteria, viruses and germs that invade the body.

Thus, it is understood that the consumption of too much omega 3 can weaken the immune system and favor the appearance of cancer. It is advisable to take care not to exaggerate the consumption of any type of supplement, including that of fish oil.

Bleeding hazard

Another case where omega-3s are too bad is in relation to bleeding, since high doses of the substance may increase the risk of bleeding. Thus, people who suffer from hemorrhagic disorders, have bruising easily or take blood thinning medications should be careful when using omega 3 supplements.

However, it is worth noting that this risk also affects people who have no history of bleeding disorders or do not use the remedy listed above.


People diagnosed with diabetes should only use fish oil supplements counting on the because they may suffer from elevated fasting blood sugar levels when the product.

Is omega 3 bad for the liver?

According to holistic nutritionist and health consultant, Maura Shekner, when we talk about fatty liver disease, omega 3 may even be useful for treatment.

According to her, a 2009 study published in theJournal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology(Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, free translation) has identified that the omega 3 has two substances - called resolvins and protectins - that may decrease inflammation in the liver greasy.

Obviously, for those who have been diagnosed with the disease, it is essential to consult the doctor before consuming more Omega 3 to help the condition and follow all the recommendations passed by the professional regarding the treatment.

The same holds true for anyone who has any liver problem - check with your doctor before taking the omega 3 supplement or any other supplement.

Side effects

Fish oil can cause side effects like belching, bad breath, heartburn, nausea, loose stools, rash and nose bleed. However, taking a good quality fish oil supplement decreases the likelihood that these reactions will be experienced.

A daily dose of 4 g of fish oil may cause reactions such as palpitation, disturbance or stomach pain, chest discomfort and swelling. It is essential to inform the doctor if you suffer from the side effects of the supplement to know the safest way to proceed.

Efficiency questioned

In an article published on the health blog of the Harvard University website, Dr. Howard LeWine warned that in May 2013, Italian researchers reported onNew England Journal of Medicine(New England Journal of Medicine, free translation) that omega 3 supplements did nothing to reduce problems like attack on the heart disease, strokes (stroke), or heart disease on people who had risk factors for disease cardiac.

With this, it becomes evident the need to always consult the doctor before deciding to take the omega 3 supplement to make sure that it is really good for your case.

In addition, the doctor also explained that consumption of higher doses of omega 3 does not mean that the body gains greater protection against diseases. Still, LeWine finalized his article recommending that readers consider eating fish and seafood as part of a healthy diet.

He argued that we need not only the omega 3 fish present, but also other fats, vitamins, minerals and molecules they carry, which can not be found in omega 3 supplements, which provide only the substance.

Beware of supplements

Another advice is to talk to the doctor before taking the Omega 3 supplement if the person has some type of problem or concern for health or taking some medication or other supplement.

The same can be done for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, the elderly, children, adolescents and those who have some type of illness diagnosed. However, anyone, even adults in perfect health, should consult their physician before taking supplements to find out the safest way to use the product.

Thus, the physician can determine, for example, if the omega-3 supplement does harm by interacting with another or supplement that is being taken and that its use is not contraindicated and will not the health.

It is especially important for anyone who knows that you have allergies to fish or clams and molluscs, talk to your doctor before using the fish oil supplement.

Do not buy fish oils that have antioxidants like Astaxanthin in its composition, which helps prevent it from becoming rancid (spoiled).

It is also important to avoid products that have mercury or other contaminants, preferring who are clearly testing to see if their supplements are not infected with these substances.

Final considerations

First, choose a good source of omega 3 if you are going to use it in the form of supplements. Choosing inexpensive cheap products can be risky as it may not have the amount of omega 3 may contain a lot of mercury and other contaminants, and the omega 3 itself may be of bad.

With regard to quantity, look at the label of the supplement which equates to the portion of capsules in terms of omega 3. For this, you may have to add up the amounts of EPA and DHA listed. Generally, in a serving of 2 capsules (of 1g of fish oil each) there are 600 mg of omega 3.

Many professionals who are quite pro-omega 3 recommend from 3 to 6 capsules per day. This gives less than 2 grams per day, and within the limits shown above.


Have you ever heard that in certain situations, too much omega 3 is wrong? Have you ever felt any of these side effects listed above? Comment below!

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