Does Omega 3 Fish Oil Help You Lose Weight?

Fish oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which provide many health benefits for the heart and brain, skin and reduce the risk of depression. In addition, it also helps with weight loss.

1. What is Omega-3 Fish Oil?

Omega-3 is a group of fats essential for human health. There are many types of omega 3, the two most important of which are:
Essential omega-3 fatty acids: Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is the only essential omega-3 fatty acid because the body cannot produce it. . This type of omega-3 is found in many plants. Of these, walnuts, hemp seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds and oils from these nuts are the richest sources. Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids: The two best known are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). They are mainly found in oily fish and fatty fish, but also in seafood, algae and algal oils. EPA and DHA are not considered essential, as the human body can use ALA to produce them. However, this conversion is not efficient in humans. The body can only convert about 2–10% of ALA into EPA and DHA. For this reason, many health professionals recommend getting around 200–300 mg of EPA and DHA per day through eating about two servings of fatty fish per week, or taking a supplement.
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EPA and DHA are involved in many essential functions in the body and are especially important for the development and function of the brain and eyes.
Studies show that maintaining adequate levels of EPA and DHA can also help prevent inflammation, depression, breast cancer and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
There are many fish oil omega-3 supplements on the market, mainly in the form of oil drops or capsules.

2. Fish oil reduces hunger and cravings

Omega-3 fish oils can help with weight loss by reducing hunger and cravings. This effect may be especially helpful for people following a weight loss diet.
The effectiveness of fish oil is different in different subjects as demonstrated by the following studies:
Healthy people following a weight loss diet consume less than 0.3 grams or more than 1.3 grams of oil omega-3 fish every day. The group that ate the most fish oil reported feeling significantly more full up to 2 hours after the meal. However, these effects are not common. Healthy adults not following a weight loss diet were given either 5 grams of fish oil or a placebo per day. The group that took fish oil said they felt about 20 percent less full after breakfast and 28 percent more cravings. Cancer or kidney disease patients who received fish oil supplements experienced an increased appetite or calorie intake, compared with others given a placebo. Omega-3s in fish oil increase satiety hormone levels in obese people, but decrease satiety hormone levels in non-obese people. More studies are needed before definite conclusions can be drawn.
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3. Fish oil boosts metabolism

Omega-3s in fish oil can help with weight loss by boosting metabolism. Metabolism can be measured by metabolic rate to determine the number of calories burned per day. The higher the metabolic rate, the more calories burned and the easier it is to lose weight and keep fit.
Studies on different subjects have shown that fish oil helps increase metabolism:
Healthy young people take 6 grams of fish oil per day for 12 weeks, metabolic rate increases by about 3.8 %. In healthy older women who took 3 grams of fish oil daily for 12 weeks, their metabolic rate increased by about 14%, equivalent to burning 187 more calories per day. Healthy middle-aged people who took 3 grams of fish oil per day for 12 weeks, increased their metabolic rate by an average of 5.3%. Most studies show that in addition to an increase in metabolic rate, there is also an increase in muscle mass. However, more research is still needed to increase reliability.

4. Fish oil increases exercise efficiency

Research shows that consuming fish oil can also increase calorie and fat burning during exercise because fish oil can help switch from using carbohydrates to fat as a fuel source during exercise .
One study reported that women who consumed 3 grams of fish oil daily for 12 weeks burned 10% more calories and 19–27% more fat during exercise. This suggests that fish oil supplementation combined with exercise is more effective at reducing body fat than exercise alone. However, more research is needed before definitive conclusions can be drawn.

5. Fish oil helps reduce fat and waistline

Omega-3 fish oils can help increase muscle mass and lose fat even at constant weight. This is shown by studies. For example, a study of 44 people who took 4g of fish oil per day showed no significant weight loss but 0.5kg more muscle mass and 0.5kg fat loss compared to the placebo group.
Another study in 6 healthy adults who replaced 6 grams of fat with 6 grams of fish oil daily for 3 weeks showed no change in weight but fat loss.
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Similarly, a small study of people taking 3 grams of fish oil per day found that they lost 0.6 kg of fat compared to those taking a placebo. However, the total body weight of the participants remained unchanged. Accordingly, a review of 21 studies concluded that fish oil did not reduce body weight more than placebo but did reduce waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratio more effectively.

6. Instructions for using omega-3 fish oil

According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the amount of omega-3 fish oil considered safe is not to exceed 3,000 mg per day. However, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the European equivalent of the FDA, considers daily fish oil consumption up to 5,000 mg to be safe. In fact, omega-3s can cause excessive bleeding in some people. Therefore, if you are taking anticoagulants, talk to your doctor before adding fish oil to your diet.
Also, be careful with the type of fish oil you're taking. Some types may contain vitamin A, which can be toxic when taken in large quantities, especially in pregnant women and young children such as cod liver oil. To supplement the required amount of omega-3, you should choose an omega-3 with 50% EPA and DHA composition. Specifically, at least 500 mg of EPA and DHA combined per 1,000 mg of fish oil.

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Reference source: healthline.com

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