Fish Oil vs. Flaxseed Oil?
- 08-08-2008, 05:31 PM
- 08-08-2008, 08:30 PM
I say both.. Thats what all the forums say that I read.. I just eat the Flaxseeds.. I just through it in the blender when I make my protein shake or put some on my PB&J sandwich..
- 08-08-2008, 08:33 PM
08-08-2008, 08:54 PM
I think I read somewhere that flaxseed is the best because it has onethat doesn't.. Personal I take a pill for fish oil + I eat fish when I can (Nice tuna sandwich on hard workout days) and I have a tablespoon and 1/2 of flaxseeds a day now
08-08-2008, 11:08 PM
08-08-2008, 11:49 PM
08-09-2008, 12:01 AM
08-09-2008, 04:05 AM
08-09-2008, 07:56 AM
I go with Fish oilFlax seeds are rich in lignans (fibre) and phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are plant substances with estrogen-like properties. In the body, they can prevent negative effects of estrogens made by our bodies. They do this either by blocking estrogen actions or by replacing estrogen at estrogen receptor sites without stimulating the receptor. Lignans in flax seed bind testosterone in the same manner as for estrogen. Researchers at Duke University found that supplementation with milled flax resulted in significant decreases in both total and free testosterone in prostate cancer patients.
08-09-2008, 08:24 AM
In my quest of learning about the sport of Bodybuilding, and supplementation, I was turned onto EFAs after the release of a un-named company’s product that claimed to have all the EFAs a Bodybuilder needs. Now I do not like to put something in my body until I am 100% sure what this product, or what the ingredients would do for me, so I researched.
Now just to compare the health benefits of each, this is what I have found through my use of Google:
The health benefits of fish oil include the following:
•Heart Disease: According to the American Heart Association (AHA), clinical trials have proved that omega 3 is effective in reducing the incidence of cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Fish oil, which is abundant in omega 3, therefore, reduces the risk of heart diseases and heart arrhythmias.
•Weight Loss: Fish oil also aids in weight loss process.
•Blood Circulation: It is believed that fish oil has the ability to improve blood circulation along with reducing triglyceride and serum cholesterol levels.
•Immunity: It is believed that regular consumption of fish oil aids in increasing your immunity thereby enabling you to resist incidence of common diseases such as cold, cough and flu.
•AIDS: Research conducted by the Nutritional Sciences Program in Lexington has increased the promise of fish oil as a treatment of AIDS.
•Inflammation: Fish oil has anti inflammatory properties; therefore, it is effective in reducing inflammation in blood and tissues.
•Arthritis: Fish oil is useful in treating arthritis, rheumatism, Raynaud’s symptoms and similar conditions.
•Depression and Anxiety: Due to the presence of Omega 3 fatty acids, fish oil is good for relieving depression, sadness, anxiety, restlessness, mental fatigue, stress, decreased sexual desire, suicidal tendencies and other nervous disorders.
•Alzheimer’s Disease: Research conducted at the Louisiana State University has shown that fatty acids are effective in treating Alzheimer’s disease. Since fish oil is one of the best sources of essential fatty acids including EPA and DHA, it helps in Alzheimer disease.
•ADHD or ADD: Fish oil has the ability to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) due to the high concentration of fatty acids.
•Eye Disorders: It is well known that fish oil is good for its ability to improve vision.
•Skin Care: Fish oil helps in improving the condition of poor and dry skin by making it shinny and glowing.
•Acne: Fish oil is effective for acne as well. EPA is known to inhibit androgen formation. Androgen can affect the formation of sebum in hair follicle.
•Cancer: Fish oil is useful in delaying weight loss in patients suffering from pancreatic cancer. Fish oil supplements can also be helpful to patients suffering from cancer related hyperlipidemia.
•Diabetes: Type II diabetic patients are more prone to cardio vascular diseases such as coronary heart disease, atherosclerosis, and stroke.
•Ulcers: The symptoms of peptic ulcer include pain in the abdomen, heartburn, indigestion, nausea, loss in appetite, weight loss, etc. Due to the presence of EPA and DHA, fish oil can be helpful in case of ulcers caused by NSAIDs.
•Pregnancy: Fish oil is very useful for pregnant women as DHA present in it helps in the development of the eyes and brain of the baby. It helps in avoiding premature births, low weight at birth, and miscarriage.
•Fertility: Preliminary research conducted on boar has shown that when male boars are fed with diet containing fish oil, the quality of the sperm is enhanced. After ejaculation, the sperms have increased survival against lipid peroxidative attacks in the female genital tract, thereby increasing the chances of conception
•Hair Care: Fish oil helps maintain a good luster of the hair. Omega three has hair growing properties as it provides nourishment to the follicles.
Now for a list of some of the benefits of Flax Seed:
•Flax Fights Cholesterol: The consumption of flaxseed is associated with a reduction in total cholesterol, including the LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides.
•Flax Fights Diabetes: It has been discovered that the omega-3 fat and high fiber in flax may play a role in the fight against diabetes.
•Flax Fights Cancer: The American National Cancer Institute has singled out flaxseed as one of six foods that deserve special study. Flax seed's high fiber aspect is also beneficial in the fight against colon cancer. Flax seed, high in fiber, lignans, alpha linolenic acid, is a key player in the fight against cancer, particularly breast and colon cancer.
•Flax Fights Constipation: Flax is high in both soluble and insoluble fiber. One ounce of flax provides 32% of the USDA’s reference daily intake of fiber. Flax promotes regular bowel movements because it is high in insoluble fiber.
•Flax Fights Inflammation: The January 1996 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that the participants in a study that took flax oil daily reduced inflammatory responses by as much as 30%.
•Flax Fights Menopausal Symptoms: Flax, like soy, is a phytoestrogen. Phytoestrogens are estrogen-like substances that are found in plants. Flax is the richest known plant source of phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens act as a natural hormone therapy and help to stabilize hormonal levels. This stabilization of hormonal levels helps to lesson the symptoms of menopause.
•Flax fights Heart Disease: Flax has been found to help reduce total cholesterol, LDL levels (the bad cholesterol), triglycerides. Flax helps to reduce clotting time and thereby reduces the chance for heart attacks and strokes. Regular intake of flax protects against arrhythmias and helps keep the arteries clear and pliable!
•Flax and the Immune System: Research has found that eating flax daily favorably affects immunity, the body’s ability to defend itself successfully against bacteria and viruses. Two components of flax, lignans and ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), have been found to affect immune cells and compounds that control immune reaction.
•Flax fights “The Blues”: Preliminary research suggests that eating a diet rich in flax could slash your risk of ever feeling “down in the dumps”. Follow up studies show that just 2-3 tablespoons of flax daily can help up to 2/3rds of severely depressed women bounce back within eight weeks. Flax, says Udo Erasmus, PhD, has a mood boosting ingredient: docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) that is essential for the proper function of brain cells, yet up to 85% of women aren’t getting enough of it. Early research conducted by Dr. Martha Clare Morris of Chicago’s Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center notes that a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids is believed to be important for brain development. She stated that some participants in the study saw a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s from eating a diet high in Omege-3 fatty acids(Flax is the richest source of Omega 3’s in the plant kingdom). More research is needed in the area of flax and its relation to depression and brain function, however preliminary research is very promising.
Now to me the benefit of each comes from the mere fact that they both contain Omega 3’s. It appears that both provide the same amount of health benefits as the other. This debate seems to lean towards which one the individual prefers to ingest as compared to which one is better.
I feel to benefit completely and have a will rounded diet, it would be beneficial to ingest Omega 3’s through supplementation of BOTH Fish Oil and Flax Seed, while maintaining a diet with Omega 3 rich foods, as not to rely on mere supplementation to benifit from the benifits of these two great EFAs.
No to answer OP's question as to which one I would choose if I HAD to choose only one, it would be Fishoil, the benifits continue to be far greater then the Flax Seed benifits. Although much research is being conducted on both of these still, but hey if Fish Oil can lead to the cure of Aids (LOL) then it has my vote as the Winner.
08-09-2008, 09:40 AM
08-09-2008, 11:41 AM
08-09-2008, 12:06 PM
Fish Oil and Flax Seed Oil contain different Omega-3 fats, which, as you can see in the post by Atrain, promote different health benefits.
Fish Oil contains EPA and DHA, which are essential to brain function and development as well as beneficial to just about every system in the body.
Flax contains Alpha-Linoleic Acid (ALA) whose primary benefit is in the prevention of heart disease through various pathways. Flax seeds high fiber content is responsible for much of its healthfulness also.
In the end, they are different substances that each promote health through different means. As it is very difficult to get too much Omega-3 fats in your diet, I recommend consuming both.
I am, however, interested to know where RenegadeRows found that litte snippet of research. I'd never head of flax lowering serum test levels. Got a link to the full paper man?
08-09-2008, 12:13 PM
Yeah Renegade, where did you find that?
Ok, based on all of what you guys have to say, I'll get both. Thanks, and keep the opinions coming.
08-09-2008, 03:48 PM
08-09-2008, 04:55 PM
they both do have different healing properties, but flax tends to be more heart and digestive tract, fish oil is brain, nerve, and heart which for me is more beneficial
08-09-2008, 06:22 PM
I didn't want to drop a bomb about the Flax seed being estrogenic since there are a few comapnies here that have products with Flax in them but it is the highest of estrogenic foods. Thats why I said Cod Liver Oil is the best, not simply fish oil, but Cod Liver Oil.
Check this out.
Phytoestrogen food sources
Phytoestrogen content (mcg/100g aprox. 4 ounces)
Soy beans 103,920
Soy yogurt 10,275
Sesame seed 8008.1
Flax bread 7540
Multigrain bread 4798.7
Soy milk 2957.2
Mung bean sprouts 495.1
Dried apricots 444.5
Alfalfa sprouts 441.4
Dried dates 329.5
Sunflower seed 216
Olive Oil 180.7
Green bean 105.8
Coffee, regular 6.3
Milk, cow 1.2
Lignan content (mcg/100g)
Total phytoestrogen (mcg/100g)
Vegtables Lignans Estrogen
Soy Bean Sprouts 2.0 789.6
Garlic 583.2 603.6
Winter Squash 113.3 113.7
Green Beans 66.8 105.8
Collards 97.8 101.3
Broccoli 93.9 94.1
Cabbage 79.1 80
Dried prunes 177.5 183.5
Peaches 61.8 64.5
Strawberry 48.9 51.6
Rasberry 37.7 47.6
Watermelon 2.9 2.9
Nuts and other legume seeds
Pistachios 198.9 382.5
Chestnuts 186.6 210.2
Walnuts 85.7 139.5
Cashews 99.4 121.9
Hazel Nuts 77.1 107.5
Lentils 26.6 36.5
Wine, red 37.3 53.9
Tea, green 12 13
Wine, white 8 12.7
Tea, black 8.1 8.9
Coffee, decaf 4.8 5.5
Beer 1.1 2.7
Black bean souce 10.5 5330.3
Black licorice 415.1 862.7
Bread, rye 142.9 146.3
Phytoestrogen data source:
Thompson, L. U., Boucher, B. A., Lui, Z., Cotterchio, M., and Kreiger, N. 2006. Phytoestrogen content of foods consumed in Canada, including isoflavones, lignans and coumestan. Nutrition and Cancer, 54(2), 184-201.
Cassidy A. Potential risks and benefits of phytoestrogen-rich diets.Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2003 Mar;73(2):120-6.
Ganry O. Phytoestrogens and prostate cancer risk. Prev Med. 2005 Jul;41(1):1-6.
08-09-2008, 06:52 PM
08-09-2008, 08:22 PM
Can't take any chances especially when your predisposed to estrogenic side effects like myself.
Last edited by RenegadeRows; 08-10-2008 at 09:04 AM.
08-09-2008, 08:56 PM
08-09-2008, 10:08 PM
08-09-2008, 10:19 PM
I researched and found the same, having since switched exclusively to Fish Oil Caps. For those of you with Costco / Sam's Club in your area, I get the Kirkland brand fish oil caps.... either the 500 or 1000 count bottles and each are like 1gram caps. I take 6-10 a day. I've megadosed @ 30/day before but benefits were not worth the extra $$, IMO.
Anyways, to the OP, go with Fishoil!
ps - I also take Olive Oil every now and then, but if I had to choose just one, get fishy!
08-09-2008, 11:33 PM
I have read somewhere and I can't seem to remember where? but I read that foods with a count of 600 or below is what men should be eating. The foods that are above that men should try to steer clear of for the most part.
Now the question is does the estrogenic negative of flax seed outweigh the possible benefits that it does have?
08-10-2008, 02:51 AM
First off a lot of the estrogenic parts of flax(the lignans if I remeber correctly) would be avoided if you were taking a oil form of it vs the ground whole seeds(some exceptions like the Barleans brand include the lignans in there oils). As far as the question about why a women would take flax, if they have an estrogen dependent cancer: the phyto estrogens in flax are weaker than the ones our body produce. For a women who has tons of E floating around this is an advantage. The estrogen receptors would be occupied by the less active phytos, hopefully feeding cancer growth to a lesser degree. For a male BB who hopefully does not have a ton of E, any additional sources of E, weather phyto or not, should avoided IMO. Personally I stick to fish oil. Also I am not necessarily a fan of cod over fish as most of the cods have lower amounts of DHA/EPA per cap as compared to the fish oil I use. I also take additional vit D/A. For someone who does NOT take A/D cod provides an excellent source. One last note, totally anecdotal, I have found that customers have reported a greater anti-inflammation response to a salmon oil vs traditional fish oil blends.
Now we could throw the new kid on the block, CHIA, into the mix but this is a good enough debate as is.
08-10-2008, 08:49 AM
You do bring up a good point about the EFAs being more in the fish oil. I may try a tablesppon of Cod Liver Oil per day along with 3-5gms of regular fish oil and see what the benefits are.
08-10-2008, 03:04 PM
This is all very confusing for my pea-brain to comprehend. LOL, JK.
Just to be on the safe side guys, even though both sides bring up valid points, I'm going to have to go with just the cod liver oil. I don't want to take a chance of going with both, I'll get plenty out of the fish anyway. But keep the opinions coming please, I like this debate.
08-11-2008, 09:29 AM
Why one or the other? Why not both? Every oil has unique benefits and set of properties, including those that provide n-3s. So why limit yourself?
08-11-2008, 09:44 AM
I take both but because of Phyto estrogen I take less flax than fish oil.
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08-11-2008, 10:00 AM
Cod Liver Oil (CLO) is very low in EPA and DHA, so isnt a good choice IMO. It also has high levels of Vits A & D that if taken in amounts to get the required EPA and DHA would probably lead to an overdose.
With the ALA that is contained in flax the body will convert this into EPA and DHA at a very low rate (between 5-15%).
Personally i opt for fish oil only.
08-11-2008, 10:03 AM
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