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Look, Feel and Perform Better Challenge > ...also talk to me about fish oil

I've refused to do fish oil since I tried it in my first LFPB challenge two years ago and had some pretty bad side effects. But on the other hand I was taking cheap capsules from Trader Joe's and therefore I had to take eight or ten of them a day in order to get the correct amount of EPA/DHA. I've often wondered whether I should try again with better, higher-concentration fish oil to see how that works, but I'm seriously spooked by the memory of those side effects.

Fish oil devotees, what brands do you like? I know the gym sells PurePharma capsules -- honestly I'm not crazy about horse pills so I was thinking about one of the liquid brands like SFH. But does it feel weird to drink a spoonful of oil every day?


January 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterStella

We take Carlson Fish Oil, which is a liquid that comes in a glass bottle. The EPA/DHA ratio is good and they have flavors like lemon that mask the fishy taste quite well.

Good luck!

January 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGreg N

I used to take a swig of nordic naturals in the past. Kind of loose on the quantity but it tasted fine.

Then I started using their pills but I would chew them because I liked the texture. Don't judge me.

January 1, 2014 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio

SFH brand is totally aok.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSam

@Stella, I use NutraSea by Ascenta and tolerate it really well. I personally like it because it has an option that comes fortified with D vitamins which I am very deficient. I usually buy it at Whole Foods.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJanelle

Thanks for the recos you guys! I've ordered the NutraSea from Amazon -- I was really hesitant to buy the SFH because it's 60 bucks a bottle and what if I hate it? Crossing my fingers that this time fish oil will work for me.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterStella

I don't know much about fish oil-- am I just looking for 3 grams per day of fish oil, or should I be looking for a certain amount of EPA/DHA? I've been taking Carlson soft gels, 3 per day, at 1250 mg each of fish oil and 400/300 of EPA/DHA. Does that sound about right?

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLily

Lily -- it's 3g EPA/DHA, which is how I ran into problems in my first challenge. Back then you got the extra point then if you did 2g or more, and although the tabs I was taking had "1.5 mg fish oil" each, they had only 200mg EPA/DHA each, so I was taking TEN of them! I guess no wonder I was feeling squirrely.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterStella

Great info so far. I'd add that if you have trouble with fish burps and stuff, then you should try slowly upping your dose over the course of a week or 2 until you're at full dose. Also consuming with food helps.

January 2, 2014 | Registered CommenterChristian Fox

Sorry for being slow… so if each capsule is 1250mg fish oil, 800 mg omega-3, 400 mg EPA, and 300 mg DHA, would 4-5 per day be appropriate? I've never had any side effects with fish oil, so I just want to be sure I'm earning my point/getting the full benefits.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLily

Lily -- yes, that's 2.8 mg for 4/day and 3.5 for 5/day, so I think 4-5 of those tabs.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterStella

Stella, thanks!

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLily

Also, not to be graphic, but I think when you first start taking fish oil, it can, er, run through you for the first few days. Your body seems to adjust.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJoel w

After years(!) -almost, almost- of research and trials, the next best thing to Lovaza (the only FDA approved production of Omega-3, thus inspected and checked, supposedly) I have found out is omegavia pharmaceutical grade fish oil (EPA 780 mg, DHA 260 mg, Other Omega-3 65 mg; Total 1105 mg). I order them online (, and with a recurring order for the last two plus years. I am happy with them, and it seems like the third party independent tests are being conducted on them regularly, and the capsules contain what it says they contain on the label.

My doctor told me it is ok to take 3 capsules before going to bed. The only side effect/overdose information I could find is that, you get to be bruised relatively easily, and might get internal bleeding relatively easily in case of serious trauma.

- the only other "supplement" i take, is vitamin D3, as again, the years of research and almost daily reading! on these definitely convinced me I do not need anything else as a supplement if I eat well, organic, balanced, healthy, and exercise regularly, sleep enough... and the real challenge is, if I get to stay away from "stress".

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMurat

forgot to add: Lovaza is prescribed, and NOT cheap (even with insurance) so if you can get your MD to prescribe you Lovaza with lots of refills, and if you don't mind paying A LOT of money, go for that. It is the best bet, as the real problem with supplements are that, there can be impurities in the tablets, and simply the contents of the tablets won't match the label, at all!, sometimes.

January 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMurat

OK, I just got my liquid fish oil.

Any suggestions on how to ramp up the dose? Since I had side effect issues before I'm going to start at 1 tsp (1250 mg EPA/DHA) today. Do I go up like 1/2 tsp a day until I'm at 2-1/2 tsp (which is what I need to get to the 3g mark)? Stay at the lower dose for a few days until I see that I tolerate it and go up more slowly?

January 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterStella

I'd do 1tsp for a few days, then 2 for a few, then 2 1/2 - 3. Take with food and it will bother you less. You should be able to get to 3g in a week or so.

January 8, 2014 | Registered CommenterChristian Fox

@Stella, how's it going with the fish oil?

January 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLily

I did what Fox suggested -- 1 tsp for 3 days, then 2 tsp for another 3 days, and I just did my first day of 2.5 tsp (yay! I finally get to claim the point!) this morning.

I have noticed some side effects -- nowhere near as severe as I was dealing with a couple of years ago, but definitely something different is going on. Would rather not share the gory details but it's something I hope will go away entirely after a few more days.

January 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterStella

I also experienced some… side effects when I upped my dosage, but that tapered off (thankfully). I don't know anything about anything, but I think that the combined high dose of fish oil and new clean diet after 2 weeks of eating and drinking like a pig creates a detox effect. Everything inside me is happier and calmer now that there's balance.

Hopefully that happens for you, too. Took me about a week to level out. Good luck!

January 15, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLily