Why You Need to Take Animal Based Omega-3 Fats

Looking at the major risk factors for early death, a group of researchers found that consuming too few omega-3 fatty acids was even more deadly than eating too many trans fats. Ranked as the 6th greatest killer, omega-3 deficiency has been attributed to 84,000 preventable deaths in just one year. Yet a whopping 77 percent of people polled don’t know low levels can be harmful to their health. Here’s what you need to know.

I’ll be the first to admit that fish oils aren’t my top choice as a source of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA.

Thanks to overfishing, marine pollution, threatened habitats, and cesspool-like fish farms, many omega-3 fish oil supplements are becoming more of a health hazard than a beneficial contribution to diet.

Fish oil is mostly derived from species that contain high levels of heavy metals like mercury, cadmium, lead, chromium, and arsenic, and PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) and radioactive substances like strontium.

If you knew better, you wouldn’t eat these fish, so why would you want to supplement with their oil?

At the same time, we’re facing a crisis... Because the American diet is so woefully deficient in omega-3 fatty acids, and far too heavy in omega-6 fatty acids, we’re seeing epidemic levels of both omega-3 deficiency and omega-3 and -6 imbalances.

I believe everyone needs a reliable source of omega-3s to help maintain an adequate intake of omega-3s and a healthy, optimal omega 3-to-6 balance.

Although my preference for a clean, sustainable, and bioavailable source of omega-3 fats is krill oil - and I believe that is the ideal option for most people - I realize this may not be for everyone.

For all these reasons, I’ve decided to take my already exceptional Virgin Salmon Oil to the next level, and to make it the go-to wholesome omega-3 alternative for anyone who prefers a non-krill fish oil supplement.

First Things First... Why Omega-3 Fatty Acids Aren’t Just a ‘Nice-to-Have’

Omega-3 Health Benefits

Omega-3 fats are an essential for your health, not just an option. Optimal amounts are important for the healthy function of neurotransmitters in your brain, memory, mental health, insulin levels, weight, heart and bones, and much more.*

The diagram to the right gives you a snapshot of the wide range of potential benefits throughout your entire body from omega-3 fatty acids.*

As you can see, they may benefit nearly every aspect of your health!*

Yet, over 2,000 scientific studies paint a dismal picture of the current status of omega-3s in America. Researchers have discovered that:

  • At least 60 percent of Americans are deficient in omega-3 fats
  • An additional 20 percent of Americans have such low levels of omega-3s, test methods cannot detect any in their blood
  • An alarming 77 percent of survey respondents don’t know that low levels of omega-3s can be harmful to their health
  • Omega-3 deficiency has become the 6th greatest killer in the U.S., implicated in about 84,000 preventable deaths in just one year
  • The typical American diet contains 14 to 25 times more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids, creating a potentially dangerous imbalance

Sure, omega-6s are important too, but nearly no one ever suffers from an omega-6 deficiency! You get more than enough omega-6s when you eat processed foods and snacks, nuts and seeds, vegetable oils, meat and dairy.

The ideal ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats is around 1:1 or 2:1. The average American’s ratio is now at least 20:1!

Bottom line... The more omega-6 fatty acids you consume, the more omega-3s you need.

Too many omega-6s can impact your body’s ability to metabolize omega-3s and can promote widespread unwanted inflammation. Clearly, balance is key!

Test your omega-3 index at home with our convenient test kits that not only check omega-3 levels but also the levels of other essential vitamins and minerals:

By supplementing two certain omega-3 fatty acids every day, you can help promote a healthy omega-3 and -6 balance.

Plant Omega-3s and Marine Omega-3s – What’s the Difference, Anyway?

Many people think that all omega-3 fats are the same. They’re actually very different, especially when it comes to your body’s ability to use them.

Wild Alaskan Salmon - DHA and EPA
Wild Alaskan salmon store DHA and EPA in their bodies from their natural diet.

Both plants and marine animals supply different types of omega-3 fats, but the most valuable for your body and brain are docosahexaenoic acid, or DHA, and eicosapentaenoic acid, or EPA.

Plant sources like flaxseeds, chia seeds and hemp provide alpha-linolenic acid, or ALA. Marine sources like cold-water fish and their oils are the only significant sources of DHA and EPA.

ALA is a precursor to EPA and DHA, but the conversion requires an enzyme that doesn’t work well in many people.

Plus, your body can only convert about five percent of ALA from plant foods into EPA, and then into even smaller amounts of DHA. Less than one-half of one percent of ALA typically converts to DHA.

Most of the ALA you get from plant sources is oxidized or burned for energy. A great source of fuel, but not for the other functions that the marine omega-3s perform in the body, including cell signaling and being involved in other critical biochemical pathways.

That’s why I recommend getting DHA and EPA – especially DHA – from marine sources such as krill, sardines, anchovies and wild-caught certified Alaskan salmon, which are all excellent sources.

The levels of DHA and EPA in salmon oil come from their diet. Wild salmon consume plankton and small omega-3-rich fish in their natural surroundings.

Salmon oil comes from the fatty tissues of the fish, so the fattier the fish, the better the oil. That’s why Alaskan salmon from frigid Northern waters are the perfect source – they accumulate fat in their tissues for warmth!

Is Your Salmon Oil from Wild or Farmed Salmon?

If the label of your salmon oil says it comes from Atlantic or North Atlantic salmon, that’s a dead giveaway...

Ditto for a label that simply states “Salmon Oil”.

Even “Alaskan” salmon is no guarantee that it’s wild. The label must specify sockeye or wild caught!

Unless the label states the oil is from wild caught salmon, it is safe to assume it’s from farmed salmon. Atlantic salmon is always farmed, unlike sockeye or wild caught, which is not.

Aquaculture or Fish Farms
Aquaculture – or fish farms – supplies over 70 percent of the global salmon market

In my opinion, oil from farm-raised fish is problematic for several reasons.

First off, you may not get enough EPA and DHA. According to a recent British study, the average omega-3 levels in farmed salmon dropped by half between 2005 and 2016.

Why is this happening? In the desire to speed up fish growth, salmon farmers are feeding their fish greater amounts of total fat – mostly from added omega-6 vegetable oils that can promote inflammation while diluting omega-3 levels.

More omega-6 fatty acids in your salmon oil can adversely affect your omega-3-to-omega-6 ratios, and consequently, your heart health.  Here are some other concerns I have with farmed salmon:

  • By law, they can be fed genetically engineered feed made with GE soy, corn and canola oils and grains
  • They can also be fed factory-farmed poultry byproducts, including feathers, necks, and intestines
  • They have been found to contain more fat-soluble pollutants like PCBs, pesticide residues, toxic metals, antibiotics and other disease-curtailing drugs, compared to wild salmon
  • Farmed salmon can be fed with a chemical – Ethoxyquin. This synthetic antioxidant chemical is approved by the FDA and the EU for use in animal feed. But not for human use (except for spices). However, it has been shown to be responsible for a wide range of health problems in humans and in dogs. You don’t want to be ingesting Ethoxyquin or its metabolites which may be present in farmed salmon.

To make matters worse, salmon farmers are facing a worldwide catastrophe... Sea lice are infesting their fish at alarming levels. Nearly half of Scotland’s salmon farms were infested in 2017. The race to fight these deadly parasites is requiring the use of chemicals – and lots of them.

Some observers describe this disturbing development as a “chemical arms race in the seas”, not unlike the current plight we’re seeing on land-based factory farms and in mega-agriculture. Fish farms are increasingly becoming “toxic toilets” rife with disease.

I certainly would not want to ingest oil extracted from any of these fish!

What to Look for in a High-Quality Wild Caught Salmon Oil

salmon oil supplements
Salmon oil supplements aren't all the same

Besides avoiding oil from farmed salmon and other fish, what are other factors to consider when shopping for high-quality salmon oil?

  • Make sure it’s from salmon and not diluted with other fish or vegetable oils – You may be surprised to learn that this has become a common problem with salmon oil. What’s labeled as salmon oil is often a mixture of salmon oil with other poorer quality fish oils to help inflate the omega-3 levels!
  • Utilizes technology to help preserve freshness and protect against free radicals and oxidation – Most fish oils don't provide this, so they can suffer from oxidation and spoilage issues. A recent study from Norway found that 95 percent of 113 brands of fish oil capsules were rancid!
  • Delivers the essential EPA and DHA fatty acidsThis is why you take a salmon oil supplement so make sure you get the right levels of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA so crucial to your health.*
  • Production processes retain vital nutrients –Some fish oil processes use excessive heat, chemical processing, and/or solvent extraction - potentially changing the structure and quality of the oil.
  • Manufacturer has a high-quality purification process for detecting and filtering out common fish toxins like mercury, PCBs, heavy metals, and other toxins -- This is a persistent problem with the majority of fish oils. Toxic residues in farm-raised fish can be 9 million times higher than the amount found in the water!

I think you’ll agree; this is a list of strict requirements that not all manufacturers can meet. During my research, I found very few fish oils even came close to making it through this rigorous selection process.

We’ve Taken Virgin Salmon Oil to the Next Level for our Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil

We’ve made a couple of significant changes to my Virgin Salmon Oil to make it better than ever.

Using the same high-quality oil from wild caught Alaskan salmon, fiver factors make Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil one of the finest oils you could ever find:

  1. MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) Certification to ensure sustainability of salmon stock
  2. Minimally processed oil – using fresh salmon with no chemical or solvent processing and no molecular distillation
  3. Tested for heavy metals, dioxins, and PCBs
  4. What’s on the label is in the bottle
  5. Packed in leak- and oxygen-proof Licaps hard capsules for freshness

The manufacturer for our salmon oil hasn’t changed. This top-tier company continues to impress me and surpass my expectations with their high-quality processes for producing the finest 100 percent salmon oil.

Quality Processes Descriptions
Employs a rigorous raw material selection process Rigorous raw material selection process rejects over 95 percent of the available raw material
Uses the richest sources (parts) of the fish To help maximize omega-3 content (EPA and DHA), manufacturer focuses on using the richest salmon parts for oil production.
Produces salmon oil from what many consider the best salmon Exclusively uses wild caught fresh Alaskan sockeye salmon. There is a short harvesting season in late June / early July
Protects the selected raw materials Once the exclusive raw materials are selected, handling is executed with extraordinary care and speed to prevent fish oil spoilage in the production process. The salmon is not frozen and only processed fresh.
Tests each batch independently An independent lab tests each batch of fish oil for mercury, PCBs, pesticides, dioxins, and other heavy metals.
Initiates post production testing Following production, further testing certifies the fish oil to be tested for environmental contaminants.
Utilizes cold pressing processes The exclusive heat extraction process ensures a totally natural, well-tolerated, and highly absorbable fish oil. Chemical and solvent processing is not used. Molecular distillation with chemical modification is not used.

When you compare my Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil to other salmon or fish oils on the market, you can see why I’m so convinced that mine sits in a class by itself. Let’s take a closer look at the four key factors that make it so unique...

You Care About Our Seas... Insist on the Blue Label

If you care about the future of fish, then the blue MSC label is for you.

Alarmingly, a recent report from the United Nations shows that almost a third of commercial fish stocks are now overharvested at biologically unsustainable levels. Many species of fish are actually under the threat of extinction!

The Marine Stewardship Council is an international non-profit organization established to address the problem of overfishing and to ensure the sustainability of fish and seafood supplies.

Their blue MSC label and fishery certification program contribute to the health of the world’s oceans by recognizing and rewarding sustainable fishing practices.

MSC Certification
MSC certification is your only assurance that your oil came from a sustainable and responsible source

When you buy fish or seafood, or any oil or product made from them, certification by the Marine Stewardship Council ensures that the product:

  • Meets the MSC’s strict standard for sustainability to help prevent overfishing and to allow fish populations and ecosystems to remain healthy and productive for the future
  • Is handled with care throughout the supply chain for quality and traceability
  • Can be traced back to a certified sustainable source
  • Is correctly labelled to eliminate fish fraud
  • Is tested through independent DNA testing by random sampling to verify contents and to test for heavy metals, dioxins, and PCBs

The future of our oceans – and the continuance of fish varieties – depends on the work of the MSC. You support their efforts every time you purchase one of their certified products.

Both my Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil and Krill Oil proudly bear the blue MSC label, so when you choose either of these fine products, you know you’re doing your part to help protect marine life and our seas!

Buyer Beware: Salmon Oil Manufacturers May Be Playing Tricks on You!

There are some misleading and devious actions going on in the salmon oil industry that you need to know about.

Because oil from truly wild caught Alaskan salmon is limited, some manufacturers are resorting to some not-so-above-board tactics to make their products appear better than they really are.

Despite what may be happening to DHA and EPA levels in fish both in the wild due to overfishing and on fish farms, many companies are not updating their labels to reflect current, accurate levels.

To see how big of a problem this really is, we decided to test some of the top-selling salmon oils and compare their actual levels of DHA and EPA to what’s printed on the labels.

In the chart below, you can see the results of our testing on three bestselling products, compared to my Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil.

All of the bolded numbers in the chart for omega-3s and EPA and DHA are lower than the claims made on the product labels. My Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil was the only one out of these four products that met the claims for omega-3s, EPA and DHA!

Brand of Salmon Oil Omega 3s per G EPA/DHA per G Does Product Meet Claims Made on Label?
A 296mg 93mg/108mg NO
B 190mg 66mg/72mg NO
C 318mg 131mg/105mg NO
Dr. Mercola’s Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil 280mg 88mg/100mg YES

Don’t let them fool you. Make sure the brand you choose is trustworthy. My Wild Caught Alaska Salmon Oil is 100 percent wild salmon oil with accurately listed levels of omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA!

Now... Packed in Licaps® Hard Capsules, Your Salmon Oil Stays Fresh and Protected

salmon oil licaps
A Licaps® two-piece hard capsule

If you’re buying another brand of fish or salmon oil capsule now, they most likely are soft gels. That’s the industry standard. There are several reasons why I no longer use soft gels for my products:

  • Soft gels contain plasticizers to make them soft and pliable
  • These plasticizers create microchannels in the gelatin that allow oxygen to enter and odors to escape
  • Oxygen entering the capsule degrades the delicate fish or salmon oil, leading to oxidation and rancid oil

Instead, I prefer Licaps® – patented two-piece hard, yet thin-shelled capsules that are hermetically sealed to form a leak-roof, perfectly airtight, one-piece capsule.

Because they offer a high degree of protection against moisture and oxygen, they’re perfect for krill and fish oils because of their ability to contain the typical odor of these oils.

Surprisingly, some soft gel manufacturers actually add fragrances to mask the fishy odors that can easily escape through soft gels.

However, over time, these added fragrances begin to resemble the scent of old chocolate. Next time you open your bottle of soft gels (if that’s what you are buying now), check to see if you notice an odd smell.

When given a choice in consumer studies, buyers, without fail, choose Licaps® over soft gels because they have little or no fishy scent.

Equally as important, Licaps® capsules are made from fish (tilapia) gelatin that contain no plasticizers. They rapidly dissolve in your gut for fast content release.

For all of these reasons, but especially the freshness and plasticizers factor, I insist on using hard-shell capsules for all of my liquid-filled supplements, including Krill Oil, Ubiquinol, CoQ-10, Astaxanthin, Liposomal Vitamin C, and Vitamin E.

Right now we’re the only company to be using Licaps® for our salmon oil!

Chosen as a Winner for Clean Eating Magazine’s 2017 Clean Choice Awards!

Clean Eating Magazine - Mercola Salmon oil
Clean Eating magazine named Mercola Salmon Oil a winner in their 2017 Clean Choice Awards

In the March, 2017 issue of Clean Eating magazine, our Virgin Salmon Oil from Wild Caught Alaska Salmon was featured as a winner in their annual Clean Choice Awards.

Being selected by Clean Eating magazine is an honor... They rigorously tested more than 1,000 products to come up with their Clean Choice Award winners. To be considered for the award, a product must:

  • Have simple, wholesome ingredients – Cannot contain additives, preservatives or fillers
  • Be safe for human consumption and nontoxic– All ingredients are run through the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) database (if applicable) to ensure they have an “A” or “B” rating for safety against harmful toxins
  • Pass the taste test – Their judges have high standards for taste (and smell), so any product must pass the muster!
  • Be organic, sustainable, and GMO-free (where applicable) – Obviously, we can’t say our wild caught Salmon is organic, but our MSC certification is our proof of sustainability – a true rarity for fish oils!
  • Use eco-friendly packaging – Clean Eating looks for products that have recyclable packaging and companies with an anti-landfill policy because they care what happens to a product’s packaging after it’s consumed

Although our product now has a new name, Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil and a new label to proudly display our MSC Certification, it’s still the same fine award-winning oil!

When You Want Fish Oil, Make It My Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon

Whether your preference is krill or salmon oil, it only matters that you choose one that avoids all the caveats I’ve covered for freshness, cleanliness, and safety.

Both my Krill Oil and Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil are exceptional sources of the omega-3 fats DHA and EPA that meet all of my expectations!

Most importantly, it matters that you take action now to provide your body with the essential omega-3s you need.

Researchers believe as many as 60 percent of Americans are deficient in omega-3 essential fatty acids.

And another 20 percent have such low levels of omega-3s that they don’t show up in their blood.

Don't delay one more day... Order my Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon Oil today!

You have nothing to lose. If for any reason you’re not satisfied with your product, my Money Back Guarantee on returned items protects your purchase! (please see complete details below)

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Top Frequently Asked Questions
  1. For long-term use, I suggest limiting your vitamin D intake from all supplements to 10,000 IU. A total of 50,000 IU and as high as 100,000 IU for acute use is okay as long as you limit it to one week only. 

    I recommend regular testing of your serum vitamin D3 levels to know for sure that you’re getting the right amount.  

  2. Krill is harvested in a specific area by one vessel. Salmon is wild caught by different fishing vessels in different areas, but all are still under MSC supervision. Therefore, with salmon, coordinates will vary even within one lot of oil.

  • If you have blood coagulation condition or are taking anticoagulants such as Warfarin (Coumadin®), do not use Salmon Oil.

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