Krill oil, is an oil extract from Euphausia superba, a fish species of the Antarctic krill. Omega-3 fatty acids and phospholipid-derived fatty acids, mainly phosphatidylcholine are the main components of krill oil. Krill oil has a high content of Omega 3 fatty acids and thus a suitable alternative to fish oil. Similar to fish oils, krill oil contains the essential fatty acids DHA and EPA that are not produced by the body. In addition to essential fatty acids, krill oil contains phospholipids and astaxanthin, an important carotenoid, that are not found in traditional fish oils. These components are essential for cognitive, cardiovascular, heart, and joint health among other vital body functions making the oil a foundational supplement for total body function optimization.
Other sources of omega 3
Plant products such as flax, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, and ground nuts contain the omega-3 fatty acid, alpha linolenic acid. Eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids are better than alpha linoleic acids both of which are found in animal sources mainly fish oil and krill oil.
Krill is a tiny organism harvested from icy cold waters of the Antarctic. It is, therefore, not industrially contaminated. The fish’s short lifespans and the pristine environment from which they are harvested, ensure that krill fish have far less potential for toxins and contamination, unlike other sea food sources.
Krill oil and fish oil compared
Both krill and fish oil have high contents of DHA and EPA. Regardless of the high amounts of essential omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil, DHA, and EPA in krill oil are superior to those in fish oil. In the human body, the essential fatty acids in fish oil are bound to triglycerides whereas in krill they are bound to phospholipids, and this enhances simplicity and ease of absorption of the oil from the intestines.
Astaxanthin, a potent carotenoid with a host of nutritional benefits to the body, is a major component of krill oil. Astaxanthin acts as a natural free radical scavenger and therefore helps in ensuring that krill oil remains fresh for some period.
Compared to most fish oil, krill oil has a shorter lifespan and is harvested in pristine waters therefore minimal exposure to any oceanic toxins.
Krill oil is a more sustainable source of nutrients compared to fish oil from sources such as cod or salmon.
- Cognitive health: Research reports have revealed that krill oil has a positive impact on cognitive health. Essential Omega-3 fatty acids in Krill oil are incorporated in phosphatidylcholine, and their impact on brain health is more efficient than that observed with triglycerides. Omega-3 fatty acids in Krill oil are bound to phosphatidylcholine and in effect they are taken up by brain tissues more readily than Omega-3 fatty acids bound to triglycerides.
- Joint health: Krill oil helps in joint support and is therefore good for joint health.
- Cardiovascular health: Myocardial cells (heart muscle cells) require Omega 3 fatty acids to function optimally. Krill oil is a rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and therefore quite effective in supporting cardiovascular health.