“I’m on a seafood diet. When I see food, I eat it.” That was the old joke, but now that we’re learning about how valuable omega-3 fatty oils are to our bodies, people are starting to take the seafood diet much more seriously, and many are turning to cod liver oil as their main source of omega-3s.
If you’ve heard about the benefits of omega-3 fatty oils, you probably want to start getting them in your body as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, omega-3 fatty acids are not made in our bodies; rather, they are found primarily in fish and in the oils from their tissues. While we may not have the oils found in fish in our bodies, we do have cod liver oil supplements to put them there.
Omega 3s are components of the cell membrane. According to the NCCIH (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health) omega-3s support cognitive function, mood health, vision, skin health, joint health, digestion, cardiovascular function, and a healthy aging process.
Cod liver oil and fish oil are both sources of omega-3, but they are very different compounds. While fish oil is extracted from the whole body of the fish, cod liver oil is taken only from the liver of the cod. Although both oils are high in omega-3s and vitamins A and D, studies suggest that cod liver oil has higher concentrations of vitamins A and D, which gives cod liver oil its own unique properties beyond those of regular fish oil.
Benefits of Vitamin A and D in Cod Liver Oil
Like omega-3, vitamin D is a nutrient that our bodies need from external sources. Vitamin D is synthesized when we are exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet rays. People who do not get a chance to spend time in the sun or don’t consume dairy can be deficient in vitamin D. These deficiencies can lead to bone fractures and loss of muscle tone and other potential health problems.
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that acts as an antioxidant in the body, to promote the healthy growth of bones and tissues. It too is a vital part of our diet.
Cod liver oil contains optimal amounts of both vitamin A and D, in addition to omega-3s, so all three can work separately and synergistically to meet their full potentials. Cod liver oil’s nutrient concentration provides a wealth of health benefits beyond those of regular fish oil, including bone health, heart health, breast health, and immune function.
So, if you think cod liver oil is just another fish oil in the sea, think again. With more vitamin A and D-3 than fish oil, cod liver oil is quite a catch. Don’t you think it’s time you caught up?