Liquid Fish Oil vs Capsules: A Closer Look
More and more people are turning to fish oil supplements and their omega 3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), for their reported health benefits.
Numerous clinical studies suggest that consumption of fish oils (or their omega 3 fatty acids) can have positive effects in heart disease, arthritis, cancer, depression, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.
If you’re thinking about supplementing your diet with fish oils, you have a wide variety of choices available, including whether to use liquid fish oils or capsules.
Depending on your specific health needs, there are advantages and disadvantages to each type.
Fish Oil Capsules Advantages:
Opaque soft gels protect the ingredients from light and UV radiation.
Helps keep the ingredients stable.
Can minimize free radical formation.
May protect the oils from going rancid.
Most capsules are tamper-proof – the oil will leak or become discolored if the soft gel has been punctured or tampered with.
Capsules are a more convenient form to package and offer uniform dosages
May be easier to swallow (depending on size and coatings) and usually have no taste and/or unpleasant odors
- Enteric-coated fish oils are available which may improve absorption of the omega 3 fatty acids
Fish Oil Capsules Disadvantages:
1. Many be only available in lower dosages
– For some fish oil capsules, the average 1000 mg. soft gel contains about 30% EPA and DHA combined (about 300 mg. of EPA and DHA).
2. Some Fish Oil Capsules may Cost More per Daily Dose
– Depending on the brand, you may need to take more fish oil capsules to match the EPA and DHA from a single teaspoon of liquid fish oil.
3. Possible Allergic Reaction to Capsules Ingredients
– Some people may be allergic to the gel capsules or soft gels which are made of gelatin. Gelatin is commonly made from the connective tissue, skin and bones of cows and pigs.
– You can avoid animal-based collagen by using vegetarian / plant-based capsules. Capsuledepot.com claims there many differences between gelatin and vegetarian capsules which may affect your buying decision.
Liquid Fish Oil Advantages:
– may be easier to swallow than some capsules or soft gels.
– many liquid fish oils are flavored or sweetened to make them more flavorsome.
– some products may provide higher amounts of EPA and DHA per spoonful compared to a single fish oil capsule.
Liquid Fish Oil Disadvantages:
– liquid fish oil bottles must be stored away from light and heat exposure to prevent oxidation of the fatty acids.
– the oils can easily go rancid and must be placed in fridge after opening.
– usually packaged in heavy glass bottles which may not be very portable.
Choosing between fish oil capsules or liquid is a personal decision that will ensure you’re getting the benefits from this popular nutritional supplement.
Which ever delivery method you choose, the most important factor is to ensure your product contains only highly-purified ingredients.