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High Cholesterol Message Board

High Cholesterol Board Index

I have never heard of "3" as some magic number (especially since fish oil comes in so many different sized gel caps, with varying amounts of essential omega-3 ingrediants).

If you are taking fish oil to reduce high triglycerides, then it seems you should be looking for a daily dose of between 2 to 4 grams of combined EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). These are the omega-3 fatty acids that actually affect lipid levels in the body. Note that the dose is combined EPA+DHA, regardless of how much fish oil you take to get that dose (eg. I take 6x1200mg soft gels of fish oil daily, to get 2160mg of combined EPA+DHA).

And yes, fish oil will often increase LDL cholesterol levels by 5%-10%, but that is essentially offset by reducing VLDL/Triglycerides and raising HDL cholesterol - usually total cholesterol is essentially unchanged (and the increase in LDL may not be permanent in the long run anyway, or may be further offset by other dietary changes and regular exercise).

Fish oil also seems to deplete vitamin E in red blood cells, so it's commonly recommended that you either take a daily vitamin E supplement, or just a good mulitvitamin formula (one with 30-60 IU vit. E). Fish oil does increase your body's oxidative stress, since it is readily oxidized in the blood stream, so the vit. E (which is an antioxidant) seems to be valuable.

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