Cod liver oil has recently began to receive attention as a potential substitute for fish oil. It is high in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D and vitamin A, all of which are essential to health and longevity. Whether or not cod liver oil is a better choice than other fish oils is still up for debate, but it’s an option worth considering nevertheless.
Components of Cod Liver Oil
Vitamin D has recently become popular in the supplement community because it effects the body in so many important ways. Vitamin D regulates calcium absorption, which aids in building strong bones and preventing bone-related diseases; it influences the regulation of hormones and absorption of other nutrients along with many other benefits. There is even an established link between vitamin D deficiency and hair loss.
Among other things, vitamin A regulates vision. Every year thousands of children in developing countries go die or go blind due to vitamin A deficiency. In developed countries deficiency is less of a problem, but vitamin A is still essential to good vision and health. As with all components of cod liver oil, vitamin A occurs in it’s natural form, meaning your body will be more able to properly absorb it than it would in supplement form. This is true for all of the vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids in cod liver oil.
Omega-3s are a popular buzzword these days and for a good reason. Although low quality versions can be found in just about anything you could think of, most people are lacking in high quality essential fatty acids, especially omega-3s. Increased omega-3 intake has been correlated with better health and lower incidences of various common ailments.
Overall cod liver oil is a great alternative to fish oil, but whether you take cod liver oil or fish oil, the most important thing is to get it from a quality source where the fish aren’t contaminated with pollutants.