Confused about Fish oil, Omega - 3

By Anonymous Latest Reply 2011-09-11 23:36:15 -0500
Started 2011-09-01 20:44:39 -0500

I'm a diabetic and I just saw my endocrinologist who ran several tests on me, and found out I had a dangerous level of total cholesterol. (over 380) I was shocked.

Now he wants me to take 4 - 1000mg capsules of fish oil, per day. I don't know what I should me looking for. Should it be omega - 3's, or straight fish oil?

Please if any one has any suggestions.

7 replies

HeartHawk 2011-09-06 23:51:14 -0500 Report


You want to look at the total milligrams of EPA and DHA in the capsule not the total capsule weight. These are the omega-3 fatty acids that are found in fish oil A good daily dose would be about 1800 mg. That might require taking up to 6 capsules containing the standard 300mg of combined EPA/DHA. There are triple strenght pills and liquids that contain 900 mg or more sold by GNC, Pharmax, and Barleans.

I am curious though. High dose fish oil (over 3000 mg EPA/DHA per day or more) is generally prescried for high triglycerides and lipoprotein(a). I am not aware of its use to reduce cholesterol. In fact, it might actually rasie it slightly!


Anonymous 2011-09-07 01:30:49 -0500 Report

I was so shocked I miss understood what the doctor had said. It was Triglycerides that were over 380.
I looked at the bottle of fish oil I purchased (not knowing what I should get ) what it says is Omega 3 fatty acids (from fish oil concentrate) 300mg and EPA/DHA 250mg.

other ingredients : gelatin, glycerine USP, purified water USP, pectin and calcium Chloride.

Is This good? Or should there be something else, or a different brand. This brand is called, " Finest Natural" Clear Natural Enteric softgel. I purchased enough, for 4 pills a day for a month to get started.

The doctor never stated whether I should take these with food or not and when to take them. (maybe he did but, I guess I may have not heard him)

I'm also worried too, that supposedly, fish oil is a blood thinner and I'm on Warfarin. Should I be worried?

HeartHawk 2011-09-07 23:31:57 -0500 Report


Yes, triglycerides of 380 are fairly high and fish oil is a good remedy. You probably should be on at least 2000 mg EPA/DHA per day which would require taking 8 of he pills you describe (you might want to find a double or triple strength capsule or liquid). Ask you doc about what dose he recommends. Also mention you are on warfarin. Fish oil will indeed "thin" the blood (albeit via a different mechanism) and its use with warfarin should be discussed with your doc as well.


Anonymous 2011-09-09 13:21:58 -0500 Report

I had contacted my doctor about this issue, also, because I was having some weird reactions from taking 4 pills a day. He has now taken me off the fish oil entirely, for the next two weeks. He has up'ed my statin which I was taking from 20 to 40mg. (Im taking Simvastatin)
He said I might possibly be allergic to something in the fish oil capsules but, he is not sure. He said they do have a prescription fish oil, but most insurances don't cover it, because they can get fish oil, over the counter. I might be a special case, if I am allergic to over the counter fish oil.
This is all I know for now.

HeartHawk 2011-09-11 23:36:15 -0500 Report


Some of the cheaper fish oils may have contaminants but usually any name brand or even bargain brand from a reputable company like CostCo should be fine. Prescription Lovaza fish oil is a rip off. You can get top-shelf, concentrated, pharmaceutical grade fish fro about 1/3 the price!