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20 mg or 20 ml? Does the EPA/DHA content of the tablets make any difference?

Sorry to be such a dummy.

The thinking is to keep the ratio as close to nature as possible, so look at the ratio of your small oily fish and that should be what to aim for - slightly higher 2:1 omega 6 : omega 3

Have a look too at the FAQ's, Diet section, about half way down you will see the question of EPA/DHA answered in some detail.
Hi Gareth,
To directly answer your question, which I'm sure is what you were after :) it has been explained to me that the EPA/DHA that we need should be 6g. If you look at my previous posts I asked a similar question and got a range of answers but this was the figure I pulled out.
It is very confusing I think and something that is not clear on this site or in the book. It's all very well saying 20g, 20ml or 20 capsules but if the EPA/DHA is different between capsules we need to know that we're getting enough right? Or not too much as the capsules are not cheap! It just so happens that there is 300mg EPA/DHA in my capsules so yes 20 is right. And if I'm having salmon or something and my portion does not quite add up to 6g Omega 3 I just take the rest in capsules.
Someone commented on my post that we were making it too complicated and we shouldn't be calculating but I disagree. We do need to make the calculations when we start off to ensure we're doing everything possible to be well which after all is what we're all here for!
I hope this has helped you.

Mel x
I agree, it's not entirely clear. I have read the book twice, the website many times and still not managed to pick it up and despite initial appearances, I am no dummy.

I think I am sorted now. A secret confidant has been in touch and set me on the straight and narrow. Your post has also confirmed what they have said, thank you.

I am annoyed though, because I haven't been taking nearly enough omega 3 since kicking of the program six months ago.

I find the omega 3 supplementation a really important part of the diet. I actually stopped taking it for a week to see how I felt and was suprised at how much more terrible I felt even in that short period of time. Hopefully pushing up your levels will help you feel a lot better.

I've always worked out the calculations as DHA been the most important of the 2 so 20 tablets having 120g of DHA in one would equal 2400g DHA daily. I just bought these tablets at the same price as the normal dha/epa ones and they have 400g DHA per tablet. So my daily sardines have approx 800g DHA so that leaves 1600g and I only have to take 4 of these capsules. I'm pretty excited about these new capsules :D, gone are the days of 20!

If anyone is interested in them they are an australian brand, I buy my D3 and B12 from them too.

Each Capusule Contains:

Concentrated omega-3 triglycerides-fish 1000 mg
equiv. docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) 430 mg
equiv. eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) 90 mg

60 Capsules $28 aus

I thought it was 5 grams total Omega-3 to shoot for. My fish oil (liquid form) has 2250 total Omega-3 in one teaspoon, 750 of which is DHA, so I have been taken 2 teaspoons a day which will give me about 4.5 grams of Omega -3 and then I take the rest in flaxseed oil. My flaxseed oil has 7700 mg of Omega-3 per tablespoon, so I take one tsp. which is 1/3 of a talblespoon daily, which equals approx. 2.83 grams Omega-3. So I am having a total of 7.33 grams of Omega -3 daily. (4.5 Fish Oil + 2.83 Flaxseed oil)....

Am I having too much flaxseed oil and not enough fish oil???

(On days I eat oily fish, I dont adjust much, since Im not sure exactly how big of a piece of Salmon I am eating, so I might just have 1.5 teaspoons as opposed to 2 teaspoons).
HI Lisa,

Just to clarify on the fish oil situation as everyone seems very confused including me.

I use high strength fish oil
so 5ml=1900mg EPH
927mg DHA

I have been only taking 10ml of this but should I also be taking 20mls even though is it classed as high strength.

I rarely eat fish and have flaxseed oil here and there on my toast/salads.

Thanks and sorry but we are all confused on this one and I have read the FAQ you recommend but still not sure


Lisa:Moderator wrote:
njmom wrote: Gareth, If you are eating enough fish, as in getting 5g Omega-3s per day with what you are eating, then you don't need the fish oil. Actually, you need to have 3/4 of the 5 grams omega-3 taken as fish oil or by eating fish and the other 1/3 from flaxseed oil.......

rachelh wrote: Hi there... showed I had high mercury levels. (I had been eating a lot of tuna and swordfish). My doctor - who specialises in nutrition - recommended backing off the big fish - concentrating on the smaller fish down the food chain (mackerel etc)......

Thank you both for your posts, quite correct. For further clarification on ALA conversion from fish or flaxseed oil, please see the FAQ here, about the 6th one in the Diet category: http://www.overcomingmultiplesclerosis.org/Resources/FAQs/
The research seems to suggest that fish oil is better than plant based oils in fighting MS. For this reason, I recommend use of about 14 to 20 grams of fish oil each -- whether from food or from a supplement.

Also, flaxseed oil does contain a form of cyanide and the US government recommends limited use of flaxseed and flaxseed oil for that reason. I think this is wise.

Finally, the omega-3s from flaxseed are not readily used by the body. It may take as much as 10 times as much flaxseed as fish oil.

I do think a bit of flaxseed oil is helpful -- based on the research I have seen. I talk about one teaspoon per day.

To help clarify this question here is, reproduced from the FAQ's:
There is a lot of discussion about whether flaxseed oil is 'as good' as fish oil. Given that our oceans are gradually becoming more polluted, particularly with heavy metals like mercury, and that heavy metals are known to cause neurological problems, it would be good if a plant-based oil like flaxseed oil could provide all our omega-3 needs.

The problem is that the fatty acid in flaxseed oil, alpha linolenic acid (ALA), needs to be converted in the body to the fish oil fatty acids, eicosapenanoic acid (EPA) and then docosahexanoic acid (DHA). I have seen various figures put on this conversion, mostly up to 10% of it being converted, dependent on general health, saturated fat consumption, alcohol consumption, and a number of other variables. Udo Erasmus in his excellent book 'Fats that Heal, Fats that Kill' does the best calculation I have seen on this. Erasmus quotes a figure of 2.7% per day of the ALA being converted to EPA. He says that this figure is likely to be higher for people getting all the essential nutrients from diet and supplements. As most people's fat deposits contain about 2% ALA (quite a bit higher for those following the diet and supplements here), this is about 200g of ALA, which could make about 5400mg of EPA (as there is 180mg EPA in a 1000mg capsule of fish oil, this is equivalent to about 30 of the 1000mg capsules of fish oil).

If there is no ALA in your fat deposits at all (if you had been taking no omega-3s in your diet whatsoever), then just taking two tablespoons of flaxseed oil would supply enough ALA to make about 378mg of EPA, equivalent to what is in two 1000mg fish oil capsules. But as can be seen from the above calculation of body stores, most people have enough stored if they are supplementing every day, to make quite adequate amounts of EPA and DHA.

The advantage of doing it this way rather than taking it as fish oil is not only related to chemical toxins like mercury in fish oil, and to questions about the sustainability of our fish stocks, but also that the EPA made this way is fresher, in the body every day. There is also the bonus that there is minimal saturated fat intake this way, as fish oil contains quite a bit of saturated fat. I prefer to take two dessert spoons of flaxseed oil a day (20mls) on the days when I don't eat oily fish.
May I be so bold as to make a suggestion? I think the FAQs section/recommendations section could do with a line saying exactly how much fish oil/flax oil to take. The section you have reproduced, just shows a reasoning behind why fish oil/flax oil should be taken. There is obviously a lot of confusion around this area from the number of topics that it generates -I know that I was confused for a long time. Or is that more a reflection on me? :lol:

There is a program overview sheet that recommends 20g a day of omega3 but that figure is not specifically mentioned elsewhere on the site except for the last paragraph above. I managed to miss this somehow and got six months into the program without getting the omega3 right. Like I say, that's probably my fault but if I can make the mistake then I'm sure that others can. I'm pretty sure that the 20g figure is not mentioned in the book either. Also oily fish differs from oily fish. If I eat a portion of oily fish with 15g omega3, do I then need to add 5ml of flax that day?

I have been heavily supplementing with omega3 these last few days and I've felt pretty great to be honest. A coincidence? Who knows.

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