If there is a knock on the lifestyle of the physique community, it’s that they often put more of an emphasis on aesthetics than health and longevity. That’s just one more reason to start supplementing with fish oil. Numerous studies have shown that it improves cardiovascular health in several ways.
- Fish oil improves blood lipid profiles, especially in the reduction of plasma triacylglycerol. Triacylglycerol levels are known to strongly predict coronary artery disease risk.
- It prevents the accumulation of plaque on the arterial walls. High levels of plaque can lead to blood clots and high blood pressure.
- EPA/DHA stimulates nitric oxide (NO) release from cells. NO leads to vasodilation, which improves blood flow and reduces blood pressure.
- Fish oil protects against ventricular arrhythmias. Under certain physiological stresses, the cells of the heart can release omega-3 fatty acids and prevent the development of a rapid heart rate, which can lead to cardiac arrest.
Fish oil has several other lesser-known benefits. Supplementation has been shown to support bone health and prevent bone mineral density losses. If you consume too much omega-6 fatty acids (found heavily in vegetable oils and processed foods), it can have the opposite effect, so make sure you keep omega-6 consumption low and your omega-3 consumption high.
Omega-3 supplementation has also been shown to help support mood in addition to being beneficial in the treatment of many psychological disorders and reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and late-onset dementia. When you’re dieting, sometimes moods take a serious toll (carb depleted, anyone?) But supplementation with fish oil has been shown to increase serotonin release, which is our “feel good” hormone and will help manage stress.