Believe it or not, every person needs a little fat in their daily diet, just as long as it's the right kind of fat. Polyunsaturated fats are the good kinds of fats that the body needs, and the benefits include a healthy heart and protection against strokes. A daily dose of cod liver oil can give you all the polyunsaturated fats that your body needs, and if you exercise regularly, fish oil will do more than just protect your heart.
Polyunsaturated fats contain the fatty acids omega-3 and omega-6. These fats are better for you than saturated or trans fats, and because they're not produced naturally by the body, you need to consume them in food. Cod liver oil is a rich source of good omega-3 fatty acids and can help the heart by reducing cholesterol levels in the blood. If your veins are clear of cholesterol, your heart will find it easier and less stressful to pump blood around your body.
Omega-3 can significantly reduce inflammation in the body, easing muscle soreness and aiding tissue repair. As well as providing plenty of omega-3, cod liver oil is an excellent and natural source of vitamin D, which contributes to bone strength. If you are obese and deficient in vitamin D, supplementing your vitamin D stores may improve your insulin sensitivity, according to a study published in February 2013 in "The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition." Insulin is responsible for triggering excess glucose energy to be stored in fat cells. Lower insulin levels means fewer signals to the body to hold onto and help build fat.
It’s worth noting that some people are allergic to fish and fish oil. Symptoms will include stomach upsets and unpleasant bouts of belching. If you experience any problems taking cod liver oil, you can still get a daily dose of omega-3 and omega-6 from olive oil, beans, walnuts and flaxseeds.
Fish oil can thin the blood, so it’s a good idea not to take too much without first checking in with your doctor. As omega-3 and omega-6 can help to alleviate blood clots, seek medical advice if you’re currently on blood thinning medication after heart surgery or a stroke. Cod liver oil is a good source of vitamin A, but ingesting too much vitamin A can also trigger health issues.
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- Cleveland Clinic: How to Save Muscle as You Age
- Harvard School of Public Health: New Vitamin D Research, Bone and Muscle Strength
- National Institutes of Health: How Insulin Stimulates Fat Cells to Take in Glucose
- The Journal of Nutrition: Vitamin D and Bone Health
- Medical News Today: Vitamin D Deficiency Speeds Up Aging Of Bones
- Clinical Physiology: Regulation of Muscle Blood Flow
Steven Lowis is a teacher of metaphysics, as well as a writer covering a wide range of topics. He specializes in the areas of quantum theory, physics, biology, health and fitness, psychology, theology and philosophy. He has released a book titled "The Meaning of Life - Understanding Purpose and the Nature of Reality."