Omega-3s are some of the most important nutritional ingredients in the world today. They have been associated with myriad benefits and the scientific support continues to pour in. To harness these benefits, consumers are seeking omega-3 solutions that are the right fit for them.
It is important to know the differences between all omega-3s. More specifically, the omega-3s EPA and DHA are the nutrients responsible for all of the mounting health benefits. And in the EPA and DHA world, there are many options to choose from such as fatty fish like salmon, krill oil, fish oil and algal oil.
But how to choose? Some consumers buy based on price, capsule size, composition, recommendations from friends and family, sustainability or even traceability of the product and many more reasons. However, what most consumers are interested is in choosing an efficient source. So, what if there was a way to measure the omega-3s you’re taking to assess their performance in the body?
Do you know your number?
More than a decade ago, Drs. Bill Harris and Clemens von Schacky invented the Omega-3 Index test. It measures the amount of EPA and DHA in your blood. The results range from 1-12%, with the 8-12% range associated with the most protective benefits. Anything below 8% has its associated ramifications -- check out the stats here to learn more.
The Omega-3 Index test is the perfect way to find the Omega-3 option that is right for you. If your number is low (which most people are), start off with an omega-3 of your choice and then measure again in 4 months to see if it made any difference in your level. It may even make sense to experiment with different sources to see which one will raise your level faster and more efficiently.
Once you reach 8% or above it is recommended that you test every 6 months to make sure your level remains in the optimal range.
An alternative to traditional omega-3s
Krill oil has been shown in numerous studies to preferentially raise the Omega-3 Index and the science supporting this effect continues to grow. The reason this happens is because the omega-3s in krill oil are linked to phospholipids, a class of lipids that helps ferry EPA and DHA into the blood more efficiently when compared to other omega-3 sources.
Seeking to personalize omega-3 use, krill oil producer Aker BioMarine has formed The Omega-3 Index Project™, a new initiative to bring more awareness to the health consequences of low omega-3 EPA and DHA levels.
Created in collaboration with Dr. Bill Harris – an internationally recognized omega-3 expert, co-inventor of the Omega-3 Index test, and President of OmegaQuant Analytics, the lab where the Omega-3 Index is analyzed - the Omega-3 Index Project will help consumers and health practitioners alike identify, correct and maintain healthy levels of omega-3s using the Omega-3 Index Test.