Thursday, August 20, 2009

Something Fishy This Way Comes

Have you ever taken fish oil supplements? They seem to be all the rage and carry a multitude of benefits.


If you must know, and I think you must in the spirit of candor, I began looking into fish oil supplements as a last resort effort to an ongoing dilemma….stress related scalp issues. Charming. I’ve always had to be mindful of my scalp drying out, but this spring, it became an actual problem. I’ve been to the dermatologist several times and have tried fancy expensive prescription foam and a prescription oily syrup-like treatment (that is very difficult to get out of my hair). I’ve tried tea tree oil shampoo. I’ve tried actual tea tree oil. I’ve tried rubbing pure vitamin E on my head. I’ve tried my old go-tos like Matrix Actrol Shampoo, and even Selson Blue. I’ve tried excessive water consumption. I’ve been net-searching and all signs point to stress related eczema. I know my little dog child starts flaking when we go on car trips (he worries-he’s a rescue pup with a sad past), but it makes a girl feel not-so-lady-like to share traits with a dog. Mind you I could be wrong and this could also be a hormonal change (supposedly we regenerate our cells approximately every seven years-it’s not a 100% proven theory, and what is relatively provable seems to suggest a wider span such as cell life ranging between 7 and 10 years, but I digress.) It could be stress, it could be hormones, it is most definitely embarrassing.

One cure that seems to pop up a lot (other than dousing my head in apple cider vinegar) is taking fish oil supplements. Omega 3 fatty acids from our fishy friends Salmon, Mackerel, Sardines, and the like contain powerful goodness that is supposed to be helpful for aiding in joint pain, promoting weight loss, increasing concentration, combating depression, reducing stress, and of course soothing eczema.

Of course the web is full of info about fish oil supplements and it’s hard to gage what’s accurate and what’s not. Many sites seem to be upfront with the fact that it could take three months for results (which is tough for an impatient girl like me to hear), but that it can be very effective to help with the flaky, red, itchy, mortification that is living with an eczema head.


Weight loss, you say?! Tell me more. And I shall. According to , Professor Peter Howe at the University of South Australia concludes that a combination of taking fish oil supplements while maintaining an exercise regimen is the key to using fish oil for weight loss. You can read the article: here. It seems that fish oil consumption alone will most likely not result in weight loss, but when paired with exercise it can up the effect for better belly fat reduction. Who doesn't enjoy belly fat reduction?

So, with so many possible benefits why not give it a healthy try? I remember reading a magazine article a while ago that promoted fish oil, and it warned of fish burps as result of taking these supplements. Fish burps?! That sounds undeniably disgusting as well as a recipe for feeling even more self conscious. However, questioning my pals who have tried them, I am receiving no reports of these alleged fish burps. I did read somewhere that your supplement should list the specific fish that make up the oil and if it doesn’t its legitimacy could be uncertain. I have also gotten the advice to keep the supplements cold to avoid rancid pills which could cause fish burps.

Fish Burp. This would be a great name for a rock band.

In the end I chose a once-a-day supplement with mackerel, anchovies and sardines. There were indeed bottles that didn’t specify the fish of origin so I steered clear. Taking multiple pills a day doesn’t work for me, because I inevitably forget, so I was glad to find a once daily dose version. You take the supplement with food, and I took my first one last night at dinner. I am happy to report that I have experienced no fish burps today. Excellent. What is more excellent is that, to my surprise, my supplement of choice was on sale. Huzzah! Behold, Nature's Bounty Triple Strength.


Here are a few of the places I hit up in my quest for info if you’re interested, but frankly, most sites out there seem to say the exact same thing:


  1. Well timed post. I was just reading about fish oil supplements the other day and hadn't the first clue how to identify a good one. Thanks!

  2. I have been reading about fish oil supplements also. MY neurologist (migraines) suggested I start taking them. I did a ton of research and reading and confusing of myself...but I am excited to hear about the weight loss benefits. :-)

  3. fish oil is supposed to be good for acne too. I have suffered from the fish burp. It is REALLY gross. I haven't taken them since. I've heard they came out with an odorless version, kind of like the odorless garlic pill. Flaky scalp is a bitch. I usually get a little dry in the winter, but this summer it has been worse than normal. I like the apple cider vinegar, but I end up feeling like I smell like table wine.

    How is the new role going? I'm excited to hear more about it. Charisse gave you a blog award, so instead of giving you two (which you are totally worthy of) I gave you an honorable mention instead.

    I hope your you're nearing the downward incline of your plateau. good luck!

  4. I have experienced the fish burp and having a dislike of fishy seafood, I found it disgusting!
    I have been taking a variety of Fish/Flax oils for the past couple of years and there are specifically some that state "No Fish Burps"; it also helps to take them at the beginning of a meal.
    I started taking them to help with my dry eyes and overall health benefits. However, without any change in diet or exercise routine, my total cholesterol dropped over 20 points in one year.
    I am currently taking one that is a blend of fish/flax/borage oil.
    Now that I've read the articles you posted, I may start to take more! And there's that "exercise" word again. Maybe its time to step away from the computer and get moving!
    Thanks for the info!

  5. I find that taking the pill before bed is good because:
    a) it absorbs better while you sleep. Ok -I made this up but it feels legit :)
    b) fish burps while sleeping go unnoticed :)