When is the best time to take fish oil?

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Fish oil is an omega-3 fatty acid supplement that has been linked to a number of health benefits.

In fact, studies show that fish oil can help reduce inflammation, improve heart health, protect brain function, and promote proper growth and development (1).

Additionally, taking your fish oil supplement at certain times can help optimize its effectiveness and avoid certain side effects.

This article takes a closer look at when you should take fish oil.

You can take fish oil any time of the day depending on when it works best for you.

This is because most research suggests that the potential benefits of fish oil supplements are not immediate, but are rather linked to long-term use (2).

Studies show that taking fish oil for weeks, months, or even years can increase the levels of omega-3s in the blood (3, 4).

However, adjusting the timing of supplementation can help avoid some of the side effects associated with fish oil.

Acid reflux, for example, is one of the most common side effects associated with fish oil supplements.

While this could be due to the fat content of fish oil, the ingested oil that floats on the stomach’s contents likely contributes to this side effect (5, 6, 7).

Splitting your fish oil into two smaller doses and taking it morning and evening is an effective strategy that can help prevent acid reflux and indigestion (7).

Summary

Since most of the benefits of fish oil are associated with long-term use, you can take it at any time of the day. That said, breaking your supplement into two smaller doses in the morning and evening can reduce acid reflux.

Regardless of when you take your fish oil supplement, it is important to take it with a meal to maximize its absorption in the body.

In particular, consuming fish oil with a good source of fat can increase the bioavailability of omega-3 fatty acids and make them more effective (8, 9).

In addition, ingesting fish oil with food can reduce certain side effects associated with the dietary supplement.

For example, consuming fish oil immediately before a meal can reduce the risk of acid reflux and indigestion (7).

Although more research is needed, some users also report that ingesting fish oil with food could often prevent other side effects such as diarrhea, belching, and nausea.

Summary

Ingesting fish oil with food can increase your omega-3 fatty acid intake and reduce certain side effects, including acid reflux, diarrhea, belching, and nausea.

Finding a time that is right for you and consistently taking your fish oil supplement is key to maximizing the potential benefits.

For some, it’s easiest to take it with breakfast in the morning to make sure you’re getting your daily dose.

In the meantime, others may find that taking fish oil at lunch or just before bed works better for them.

For this reason, it’s best to find out what works for you and establish a routine to optimize for any potential health benefits.

Summary

Establishing a routine and taking your supplement consistently can maximize its potential health benefits.

Because the potential benefits of fish oil are tied to long-term use, consistently consuming fish oil is more important than the time of day you ingest it.

However, ingesting fish oil with food can increase its absorption and prevent certain side effects.

Finding a time that is right for you and regularly consuming fish oil is the easiest way to optimize its effectiveness.

If you want to try fish oil to improve your overall health, you can find various products in stores and on-line.

Discuss any new dietary supplement with your doctor first, especially if you have an underlying medical condition.

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