Fish Oil for Anxiety

Fish Oil For AnxietyImage

Fish oil is widely being used in all over the world has many benefits as well. A number of people use fish oil for depression and anxiety as they claim that they find it effective in overcoming the mental stress. However, some have the reverse opinion and they consider fish oil a cause of anxiety and depression. Basically, the key ingredient of fish oil is the omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid which is a long-chain chemical and directly impacts on cardiovascular and psychiatric health. The article will discuss the major functions, chemical composition and impacts of fish oil on the body.

Chemical Composition of Fish Oil

The human brain is made of fat and it's the key building blocks of the cell membrane and play a vital role in the brain's functions. Fish oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acid, which is responsible for the flexibility of the membranes, keep hormones and chemical messengers in a track and control the movement of neurotransmitters. All these factors directly affect our mood and immune system.

Does Fish Oil Cause Anxiety?

It's not necessary that everything shows positive results in every case as body reaction and conditions differ from person to person. There can be certain factors in fish oil, which may increase anxiety rather reducing it. Here are some main factors listed below.

Amount of Acetylcholine: Neurotransmission is an essential supplement of the acetylcholine present in fish oil. The neurotransmitter is responsible for the following functions in the body:

    1. Transfer information from body to other parts
  • 2. Recall Memory and give strength to the brain
  • 3. Defensive reaction in danger
  • 4. Helps in learning the new things

The person with low level of acetylcholine can freely use fish oil for anxiety attacks, but it's good for the vise versa. Fish oil is adverse only in cases when it increases the acetylcholinesterase and acetylcholine levels in the body as it rises the anxiety level and the person should take an anti-anxiety drug to overcome the problem.

Amines: Amines are the result of the breakdown of amino acids in the body. The foods having amines in them cause psychiatric issues and increase the level of anxiety and stress while the same reaction noticed in case of the salicylate. The people should avoid fish oil capsules and take the doctor's suggestion in this matter.

Brain Activity: The increased use of fish oil, especially when one has a high level of acetycholine experience a negative impact on the brain. Homeostatic functioning and changes regional activity are some major brain's reactions to the regular use of supplements. The continuous use of fish oil forces the brain to re-write it and which improves and worsen the moods. Similarly, some researchers claim that the regular use of fish oil QEEG patterns and brain waves which negatively impact its functionality. However, the majority of the scientists believes in the benefits of the fish oil and terms it optimal for the normal persons.

Neurotransmitters: The excess use of fish oil fluctuates the level of neurotransmitters which results in anxiety and tension. The increased level of Omega-3 for anxiety can be reduced by using anti depression drugs as its responsible for passing the sensitive information. Similarly, there is a myth that omega3 supplementation decreases the level of norepinephrine.

How Much Fish Oil to Take for Anxiety?

There is a famous proverb that excess of everything is bad. It fits well in this case as well. The usage of fish oil demands some caution when using for the treatment of stress. Now the question is ‘Does fish oil help in anxiety?'. The answer is ‘Yes' and doctors of the National Institute of Health prescribe 9.3g per day when used for the treatment of anxiety while 1-4 g is the suggested dose for the heart patients. On the contrary, some doctors think that 200 mg shows effective results while many others recommend 100-300mg to reduce the depression.

EPA VS DHA for Anxiety

Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are the two very important fatty acids have their own benefits to the body. Both are not similar and perform different functions in the body. Here are the major benefits of EPA.

  1. 1. Decreases the cellular inflammation
  2. 2. EPA competes with arachidonic acid to get an enzyme phospholipase A2
  3. 3. EPA is a good competitor for AA than DHA

Here are some benefits of DHA listed below.

  1. 1. Support mental functions of the brain
  2. 2. Help to develop the brain and inhibitors of the enzyme delta-6-desaturase (D6D)
  3. 3. Increases the size of LDL particles batter than EPA

Factors Increase Negative Effects of Fish Oil

According to the Oxford Medical Csae Report, the use of Omega -3 which is found in fish oil significantly reduces the risks of depression and anxiety attacks. Omega-3 PUFA and is directly related to the mental disorders and maintain the mental health of the person. In certain cases, some factors negatively affect the brain functionality. Here are a few of them mentioned below.

Low Quality Fish: Always use fresh fish for eating purpose as low-quality fish is toxic to the brain. The same precaution is required for the oil supplementation and make sure that the fish oil you're buying is laboratory tested and preserved in a cool environment.

Omega 3 Fatty Acid Content: The appropriate percentage of DHA and EPA are necessary for getting the required benefits of the fish oil. Sometimes, the DHA is more than EPA while in many others EPA has more contents than DHA. This abrupt ratio is responsible for increasing the anxiety.

Drugs: The person should take special care in the use of fish oil if he or she is already using any drug or medicine as the influence of the drug can increase the level of acetylcholine which results in depression.


The use of fish oil is found good for the reduction of depression, but if one feels more depressed, then he or she should immediately stop its use or change the omega-3 ratio. Moreover, visit the doctor immediately and discuss the matter in the detail.

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