How Much Fish Oil Should I Take?

Nikhil Goswami

Many people include supplements in their diet to meet the daily nutritional requirements of their body. Omega 3s capsules are one of the most popular dietary supplements these days. These fish oil supplements have benefited many people, particularly those with heart diseases, all over America during the past ten years. 

Many healthcare professionals recommend taking fish oil supplements. 

The catch is that you must take them in the right dosage to avoid side effects. Therefore, it is better to consult an expert instead of experimenting with these supplements.  You can try fish oil supplements

However, if you are searching for how much fish oil I should take with that very supplement in the other, we have you covered. This article talks about accurate fish oil dosage recommendations for healthy individuals.

Why Take Fish Oil Supplements?

Omega 3s capsules consist of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosatetraenoic acid (EPA), which are essential for the body’s overall health. They are essential fatty acids, as our bodies do not produce them naturally. One of the excellent sources of omega 3s fatty acids is fish oil supplement which also contains other fatty acids and lipids.

Fish oil also contains vitamins such as A, and D. Vitamin D helps maintain bone health and immunity, while vitamin A is an antioxidant. Some food sources besides fish oil also contain omega-3 fatty acids. However, they are usually in the form of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is not as beneficial as combined EPA and DHA.

Many doctors have stressed the importance of fish oil concentrated capsules as a typical Western diet is low in the essential omega-3 fatty acids.

Recommended Dosage: How Much Fish Oil Supplement to Take To Get Its Benefits

Fish oil supplements are widely known for their health benefits. You may hear your friends and family recommend it to you based on their experience. The problem is they cannot tell you how much you need or how frequently you should take it. 

Apart from not having a degree or experience in medicine, you might not know the suitable daily intake because there is no set reference for it on the internet. However, what you may find is information on omega 3s, EPA, and DHA recommended dosages.   

EPA and DHA have a recommended daily dose of 250-500mg. Typically, fish oil will have about 300 mg of EPA and DHA per 1000mg. We recommend you go through the label of supplements to find their EPA and DHA dosage.

Healthy Adults

The recommended dosage of fish oil for healthy individuals is 1600mg for males and 1100mg for females. Usually, people take chia seeds, flax seeds, walnuts, and soybean as the sources of omega 3s. Although it forms EPA and DHA indirectly from ALA, it doesn’t meet their required levels.

You can take doses of up to 3000mg as it is considered safe for adult consumption. The European food safety authority has concluded that 5000mg of omega-three fatty acids are safe.


Research does not show any clear evidence on whether older people should take more fish oil than younger adults. However, it seems to act as a counterforce on oxidative stress in older people, which is undoubtedly true. In such conditions, fish oil supplements can also support lipid health and maintain heart function. 

Kids and Newborns

The RDI of omega-3 fatty acids for newborns is 500mg. It increases gradually as the infant grows till 14 years of age. EPA and DHA dose recommendations vary according to the child’s age. A four-year-old will need a 100mg omega-three fatty acid dosage, while an eight-year will need a 200mg dose.

Similarly, children’s fish liver oils also naturally have some vitamins like A and D, while other fish oil capsules might also have vitamin E. Vitamin E maintains the oil’s stability and could increase shelf life.

To ensure the right amount of nutrients, look for fish oil supplements tailored for the appropriate age of your child.

Pregnant Women

Normal fetal development requires EPA and DHA. DHA particularly proves to be very helpful during the third trimester of pregnancy. Therefore, pregnant women should take the recommended amount of EPA and DHA daily, as it will help in the development and growth of the foetus and newborn. 

These nutrients reduce the risk of asthma and allergies in infants. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the daily recommended dosage of EPA and DHA together is 300 mg. Out of that, 200mg should be DHA.

Potential Benefits of Fish Oil 

These supplements may have a sour, fishy aftertaste but have many benefits. Some of the potential benefits of fish oil are below. 

Improves Heart Health 

Eating fish will help improve cardiovascular health in many ways. There’s strong evidence that people who regularly consume fish have a lower risk of heart diseases. 

Studies have also shown that people who regularly take fish oil mostly enjoy normal blood pressure levels. Additionally, fish oil helps lower triglyceride levels in the body by 30%. It also helps lower LDL (bad cholesterol) in the body while increasing HDL (good cholesterol) levels.

Fish oils also prevent the hardening of arteries by averting plaque formation. Overall, they help reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. Despite all that, there is no evidence that fish oil can prevent heart attacks or strokes.

Improves Eye Health

Omega 3 fatty acids also help support eye health by reducing the risk of diseases related to it. People often face age-related macular degeneration, which blurs their central vision. The worst part is that it may or may not be treated. The good news is that fish oil can help prevent it in the first place. 

Reduces Inflammation

People suffering from diabetes, depression, obesity, and heart diseases often face chronic inflammation. Fish oil has anti-inflammatory properties, which help reduce such conditions. Omega 3s also help improve joint health by reducing stiffness and pain, and they may also act as a substitution of medications in case of rheumatoid arthritis.

Improves Skin Health

Some fatty acids in omega 3s supplements help restore the skin’s natural production of omega-three fatty acids, which declines with age. It may help in the case of skin diseases such as dermatitis and psoriasis.

Beneficial for Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women

Omega 3s boost early development and growth during pregnancies, so females are suggested to take these supplements during this time. They particularly improve kids’ brain and neural development while enhancing their attention span. Breastfeeding women may also be advised to take fish oil to enhance their baby’s visual development.

Reduces Liver Fat

Eating fatty fish or fish oil helps improve liver health. Nonalcoholic fatty liver is a common liver disease in which the liver gets accumulated by fats. This supplement helps reduce the incidence of such liver conditions by lowering the amount of fat in the liver.

Lowers Allergy and Asthma Risks

Asthma has positively impacted the incidence of allergies, particularly in fetuses during pregnancy and newborn babies. Also, evidence has shown that women taking fatty acid supplements during pregnancy reduced the risk of asthma in their children by almost 30%.

Improves Bone Health

The bone starts losing its essential minerals as you age. Consequently, you would have noticed an increased occurrence of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis in older adults. 

Although usually, doctors recommend calcium and vitamin D supplements, in this case, eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid can also be very beneficial. Evidence has shown that people who took higher doses of omega-three fatty acids had better bone mineral density than others. 

Reduces Depression

Depression is one of the major illnesses in the world these days. Usually, patients with depression have a low amount of EPA and DHA. Taking supplements will help elevate the levels of these nutrients in the body.

Improves Neurodevelopment in Children

Many neurodevelopmental disorders in children involve hyperactivity and inattention, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Getting enough omega-3s may be crucial for preventing these disorders in adolescence because they comprise a sizeable component of the brain. Supplementing with fish oil may help impulsive, hyperactive, or aggressive kids, which might improve early learning. 

Promotes Mental Health

Your brain’s ability to process information slows down as you age, and the risk of Alzheimer’s increases.

Of all the benefits, fish oil has one of its significant benefits in treating certain mental health conditions as the brain is made up of sixty-percent fatty acids. EPA and DHA help boost typical brain function. It is suggested that these supplements reduce the chances of certain psychotic diseases.

Moreover, people who consume more fish typically face reduced cognitive abilities later in age than people who don’t take fish or its oils at all. A few researchers have suggested that fish oil may enhance memory in healthy older persons.

Are Fish Oil Better Than Omega 3 Supplements?

Omega 3 is a fatty acid. On the other hand, fish oil is an oil, and they both have different structures and chemical components. Fish tissues create the oil or fat known as fish oil. But it has no ALA; it only has EPA and DHA. Omega-3 fatty acids comprise 30% of fish oil, and the remaining 70% contain various lipids.

Omega 3s are polyunsaturated fatty acids. They come in three different forms: EPA, ALA, and DHA. Fish like sardines, cod, and other species contain EPA and DHA. However, ALA can also be obtained through flaxseeds, walnuts, and vegetable oils like canola or soybean.

Usually, omega-three supplements made of sea algae consist of EPA and DHA, with DHA higher in concentration than EPA. Omega 3 fatty acids are extracted from fish, plant oils, and sea algae. Fish-derived omega 3s also have EPA and DHA, but not ALA. They, although, have more EPA than DHA.

A fish oil supplement may increase your EPA and DHA levels if you don’t consume fatty fish frequently. However, an algae-based accessory is a decent substitute if you don’t eat any fish items.

Otherwise, a plant-based omega-3 supplement will help you consume more omega-3s but probably won’t enhance your levels of EPA or DHA.

So it’s better to take fish oil since it has higher doses of EPA and DHA, which have proven more effective and beneficial than ALA.

How To Take Fish Oil?

The American Heart Association recommends two servings of fish per week to get the roughly needed amount of EPA DHA in the body.

Given the health benefits of fish, you should take one to two servings of oily fish every week. But if you don’t like the fishy taste or have other issues, you may consider taking a fish oil supplement.

Consider the following things before starting the supplements.


We have already discussed the dosage in detail above. WHO recommends 1100mg fish oil dosage for women and 1600mg for men. However, it may vary for children, pregnancy cases, and if you have any heart disease.


Always look for the sustainability certificate for the fish supplement you are getting. Environmental Defence Fund and Marine Stewardship Council are such certifications. Usually, small fishes are more sustainable as compared to large fishes.

Third-Party Tested

Always look out that your supplement is the third party tested as many supplements companies provide false information about the supplement they claim they have.


Always check out the label of the supplements you will buy. Usually, supplements provide 300 mg of EPA and DHA per 1000mg. Read the label carefully. Choose the one with 500mg of EPA DHA or more per 1000 mg of fish oil.


As omega 3 is a fatty acid, it will undergo frequent oxidation that will decay the capsules. To avoid this situation, select the fish oil with vitamin E on its label, as vitamin E is an antioxidant that will prevent immature oxidation. You should also store your supplements in a cold and moisture-free place.


Ethyl esters, phospholipids, reformed triglycerides, triglycerides, and free fatty acids, are a few of the different forms fish oil can take.

Try to choose a fish oil supplement, which comes in one of the indicated types, as your body doesn’t absorb ethyl esters as effectively as other forms do.

Side Effects

Although fish oil has many benefits, too much may do more harm than good to your health. Some of the side effects of consuming a higher dose of fish oil are:

Too Much Low Blood Pressure

As we have discussed earlier, fish oil reduces the body’s blood pressure. Fish oil may cause drug interaction with blood-pressure medications and dangerously reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.


Most people observed that too much fish oil caused digestive system side effects such as diarrhea. Such side effects vary from person to person. It is generally recommended that you decrease your dosage of supplements if you experience such side effects.

Nausea and Stomach Discomfort

One of the health concerns of fish oil is that its higher doses may cause heartburn. After taking fish oil, people have noticed nausea, stomach discomfort, and vomiting. You should take these supplements after meals and on recommended doses to avoid such cases.


Although a regular dose of fish oil helps promote sound sleep, its high doses may cause insomnia, and taking too much omega 3 interrupts the normal sleep cycle and induces insomnia.

Frequently Asked Questions About Consumption Of Fish Oil

Q1. Is fish oil safe for older adults?

Fish oil for a person over 50 should be taken with some precautions. Occasionally, fish oil can cause mild side effects due to drug interaction with other medications. Besides the above, fish oil could interact with certain medications. The most important aspect of the product may be interaction with anticoagulants, like coumadin or warfarin. Fish oils may cause increased clotting times, which can cause bleeding. The oils of the fish have less of an effect on blood clotting. A combination of the drugs that prevent clotting of blood can be problematic.

Q2. Tell me the best way to use fish oil?

A dietary guideline recommended helping maintain a healthy weight benefit the heart. It is recommended to eat two servings per day of fatty meat per day to lower blood pressure, and you cannot make them naturally from fat. Fish oil and omega-three dietary supplements prove a great help here. Take fish supplements as an alternative to a balanced diet and lifestyle change. Dieting regularly helps to lower cholesterol and reduce heart attacks. 

Q3. What time of day should I take fish oil?

There are no specific times when fish oil supplements can be taken, and some techniques are good ways to increase your experience. Fish oil supplements can cause digestive issues, including upset stomach or indigestion, and this is usually relieved through the consumption of moderate levels of these supplements. Several people keep fish oil capsules in refrigerators to avoid belching. Likewise, meals high in fat are best suited, and Omega3 fats are absorbed better in fat foods.

Q4. How much EPA and DHA are found in fish oil supplements?

Fish oil capsules often advertise supplying 500 mg of fish oil. It doesn’t help that fish oil has only a small omega-3 component. Natural fish oils contain up to 30% combined EPA and DHA. The regular 1000-milligram capsules are 300mg for EPA and DHA. Non-concentrated krill oil sachets are less high in omega-3 fatty acids and contain high levels of omega-3s in their formulation. Even concentrated capsules require ingesting a small number of tablets for a good daily dose.

Q5. How many doses of fish oil are too much?

The recommended dosage of EPA and DHA daily is 250-500 mg. Although, heart disease patients are advised a dose higher than this.

The European Food Safety Authority recommends 5000mg of fish oil dosage per day safe. A dose higher than this may cause side effects, as mentioned above.

Q6. Is taking fish oil dosage during pregnancy beneficial?

During pregnancy, extra attention must be paid to omega 3’s. A Review on Gynaecology states that the richest sources of Omega-3 fat are ocean sources like fish and seafood oil. DHA is very important to a baby’s well-being, and it helps in the proper development of the fetus’ brain. In a new report published by Nutrient Review 2018, DHA is particularly vital to healthy brain development in babies.

Q7. Please tell me the best Omega 3 dosage for me?

The omega-3 fatty acids provide the necessary energy to meet the need to consume an adequate dose. Other factors such as the product’s weight, age, and bioavailability are equally important. To account for the individual differences in your body, we suggest taking the omega-3 indices blood tests. Omega-3 indices are believed to be the most beneficial to heart function.

Q8. Is fish oil dosage good for healthy cholesterol levels?

A new study suggests fish oils can reduce high cholesterol and lower cholesterol levels. When considering health cholesterol, the female should aim for levels ranging from 100 to 125 mg per lb. Men should maintain a similar LDL/HDL level, but healthy HDL levels are 40 mmol/dL or higher.

Q9. What is the difference between cod liver oil and fish oil?

Fish liver oil is extracted from the tissues of fishes like white cod liver or tuna. The cod liver oil is removed from the liver of a cod, and both have good nutritional value.

Conclusion: How Much Fish Oil Should I Take? 

Fish oil supplements provide many health benefits and are recommended by many doctors to be taken daily. There is no reference for daily intake of fish oil, although EPA and DHA have RDI. It is suggested that a healthy individual consume about 250-300 mg of EPA and DHA daily. But this concentration will vary for people with cardiovascular disease or women with pregnancy.

Fish oil boosts the normal development of the brain and eyes, and it helps combat inflammation and protects against heart problems. They also have proven to improve mental capacity.

People at risk of developing these illnesses can gain weight by taking fish oil because it is high in omega-3s.

While eating two servings of oily fish per week can provide adequate omega-3s, eating whole foods is nearly always preferable. Fish is just as helpful as fish oil at warding off numerous ailments. However, a fish oil supplement is a decent substitute if you don’t eat fish.

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