Fish oil is not a vitamin, and it's not strictly vital to good health. But if you eat a standard American, Australian, Canadian, New Zealand, British or Irish diet, chances are you will benefit by adding fish oil to your daily dietary routine.
What is Fish Oil Supplements Good For
Fish oil is a rich source of the omega-3 essential fatty acids DHA and EPA. The human body uses these fatty acids to make the regulatory hormones that keep inflammation from running amok. A little inflammation can be a good thing. It activates the immune system. It helps blood clot. It enables the body to respond to stress.
The omega-6 fatty acids (found in plant oils) are also essential. But because many diets, especially in the USA, contain enormous amounts of corn oil and soybean oil in many forms, most people get more of the materials used to cause inflammation than the materials that enable relief.
Fish oil is a very practical source of omega-3 essential fatty acids. All fish and shellfish make omega-3 essential fatty acids, but because they function as "antifreeze," they are especially abundant in cold-water, deep sea fish, such as cod, salmon, herring, sardines and hokey.
The old-fashioned way of making fish oil was to collect cod livers and let them go through a process euphemistically termed "fermentation." It was also called "rotting." The result is a very pure fish oil, but with a distinctive flavor that takes a lot of getting used to.
The newer way of making fish oil is to steam the fat from ocean-caught fish. This method releases fat in the steam, which can then be distilled into a purer product, without any bacterial contamination.
But this method also captures a lot of "fishiness" that can cause some unpleasant surprises for new users of this product. Some manufacturers mix the fish oil with the solvent hexane and then evaporate the hexane to take the "fishiness" out of the final product, but do you really want fish oil that is made with chemical solvents?
Pure Fish Oil Capsules
The newest way of making fish oil is to expose fish fillets to high pressure carbon dioxide, under so much pressure that it turns into a liquid. The carbon dioxide dissolves the oil and only the oil, and when the pressure is released the carbon dioxide goes back into a collection tank, leaving pure fish oil behind.
The purity of fish oil made this way makes it possible to create a product that puts a lot of essential fatty acids into a tiny capsule, more than 3 times as much as made by conventional methods.
This oil stays fresher, is hypoallergenic, and it leaves the maximum amount of nutrition in the fish from which the oil is made for other purposes.
Xtend Life is made by this newest process. For maximum benefit from a fish oil made without fermentation and without chemicals, we recommend Xtend-Life.