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Fish oil supplements contain nutrients from fish, phytoplankton, and seafood. The most common types are softgels, pills, gummies, and liquids, and they typically include omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin A, and vitamin D.
In this article, we discuss what fish oil supplements are and explore evidence of their benefits. Also, we recommend 12 fish oil supplements across a range of categories.
A quick look at the 12 best fish oil supplements in 2022
- Best for extra support: Nordic Naturals ProOmega-D
- Best for vitamin D3: Nature Made Fish Oil with Vitamin D
- Best flavor: Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega Liquid
- Best for a budget: Kirkland Signature Natural Fish Oil Concentrate
- Best mini size: GNC Triple Strength Fish Oil Mini
- Best for burp reduction: Kaged Omega-3
- Best krill oil: Elm and Rye Krill Oil
- Best cod liver oil: Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil
- Best high concentration: Wiley’s Finest Peak Omega-3 Liquid
- Best flaxseed oil: Barlean’s Flax Oil
- Best vegan option: Care/of Veggie Omega
- Best for children: Nordic Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Gummies
There are different types of omega-3, including:
- Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA): Known as a long-chain omega-3, EPA comes from oily fish and seafood, including salmon, sardines, and mackerel.
- Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA): Another long-chain omega-3, DHA also comes from oily fish and seafood.
- Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA): This is a different type of omega-3, which is found in some plant oils, including soybean and flaxseed. It is also in black walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds.
The human body cannot make essential fatty acids. However, it can convert ALA to EPA and DHA in small amounts.
Medical News Today chooses products that meet the following criteria:
- Ingredients: MNT chooses products containing safe and high-quality ingredients that are clearly labeled. They should also confirm they are free from pesticides, heavy metals, and mold.
- Dosage: MNT chooses products that must clearly state the supplement dosage.
- Serving size: MNT selects products in which manufacturers recommend a safe dosage.
- Third-party testing: MNT chooses products that must undergo third-party testing for contaminants by an ISO 17025-compliant laboratory.
- Available certificate of analysis:MNT chooses companies that demonstrate transparency and share a product’s certificate of analysis (COA) following receipt of its third-party lab results.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.
Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.
Best for extra support: Nordic Naturals ProOmega-D
|Total omega-3 per serving||1,280 milligrams (mg) per 2 softgels|
|Pros||lemon flavor; contains EPA, DHA, and additional vitamin D3|
|Cons||expensive; unsuitable for vegan diets; high dosage|
This fish oil supplement from Nordic Naturals has a high level of EPA, making it suitable for anyone who is looking for an extra-strength supplement.
These supplements also have additional vitamin D3, which may help promote immunity and bone health.
Best for vitamin D3: Nature Made Fish Oil with Vitamin D
|Total omega-3 per serving||720 mg per 2 softgels|
|Pros||additional vitamin D3; budget-friendly; gluten-free|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets|
Nature Made’s fish oil supplement provides 360 mg of omega-3 per softgel. It also contains 250% of a person’s
The oil comes from wild ocean fish, and the company claims it removes mercury through purification.
While the company references EPA and DHA on the label, it does not specify the amounts.
Best flavor: Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega Liquid
|Total omega-3 per serving||2,840 mg per 1 teaspoon (5 milliliter [ml])|
|Pros||artificial additive-free; lemon flavor that prevents fishy burps|
|Cons||higher cost; unsuitable for vegan diets; high dosage|
This liquid supplement has a lemon flavor, which helps eliminate any potential fishy-flavored burps that some people report experiencing with omega-3 supplements. It also has a high concentration of omega-3s, with 1,460 mg of EPA and 1,010 mg of DHA per dosage.
The company claims it sources the oil from deep-sea anchovies and sardines. It also claims to include ingredients free of genetically modified organisms (non-GMO).
Best for a budget: Kirkland Signature Natural Fish Oil Concentrate
|Total omega-3 per serving||300 mg per 1 softgel|
|Pros||budget-friendly; United States Pharmacopeia (USP) Convention-certified|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets; lower dosage|
Kirkland Signature is a budget-friendly fish oil supplement option.
This unflavored softgel contains 250 mg of EPA and DHA, although the company does not specify the amount of each. It also has 50 grams (g) of other omega-3 fatty acids.
Best mini size: GNC Triple Strength Fish Oil Mini
|Type||mini softgel capsules|
|Total omega-3 per serving||1,065 mg per 2 mini softgel capsules|
|Pros||easy-to-swallow size; neutral taste; coating to help eliminate fish-flavored burps|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets; high dosage|
For an easier-to-swallow fish supplement, GNC’s triple-strength option comes in a mini size. However, despite being small, they contain a high concentration of omega-3s.
In total, each dose contains 1,065 mg of omega-3s. Of this, 734 mg is EPA and 266 mg is DHA. The company lists 65 mg as “other omega-3 fatty acids.”
The company claims it sources its fish oil from deep-sea anchovies, cod, tuna, sardines, and salmon, which are then purified of toxins.
Best for burp reduction: Kaged Omega-3
|Total omega-3 per serving||3,000 mg|
|Pros||odorless; certified by Friend of the Sea; 100% wild-caught|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets; high dosage; higher cost|
Kaged’s omega-3 supplements use high quality fish oils in a fish gelatin capsule. The brand suggests that these supplements do not oxidize as quickly, which helps to prevent fishy burps.
Each serving contains a high amount of omega-3, featuring 110 mg of EPA and 900 mg of DHA.
The company claims to use a two-stage purification process for its sustainably caught fish.
Best krill oil: Elm and Rye Krill Oil
|Total omega-3 per serving||500 mg|
|Pros||free of soy, dairy, GMOs, and gluten; third-party tested; no preservatives or additives|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets; higher cost; no EPA or DHA amounts specified|
Elm and Rye’s krill oil is from Antarctic krill, which have high levels of DHA and EPA.
These capsules are 100% krill oil, which the company says contains astaxanthin — a natural compound that some
Krill oil can be an alternative for people who do not want to take fish oil.
Best cod liver oil: Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil
|Total omega-3 per serving||1,293 mg per 1 teaspoon|
|Pros||sourced from sustainably caught wild cod; third-party tested; is a liquid, which some people may prefer|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets; requires refrigeration; higher cost|
Rosita’s unprocessed and raw cod liver oil contains 443 mg of EPA and 605 mg of DHA. It also contains naturally occurring vitamins A and D.
The company uses a cold-process extraction technique to create small batches of oil.
Best high concentration: Wiley’s Finest Peak Omega-3 Liquid
|Total omega-3 per serving||2,300 mg per 1 teaspoon (5 ml)|
|Pros||is a liquid, which may suit some people better; lemon flavor; free of gluten, sugar, nuts, and soy|
|Cons||unsuitable for vegan diets; very high dosage; needs refrigeration; higher cost|
Wiley’s Finest omega-3 liquid contains a very high concentration of omega-3, with 1400 mg of EPA and 900 mg of DHA per serving. This may not be appropriate for everyone, and a person should consider speaking with their doctor or a healthcare professional before purchasing.
This product also comes in liquid form, making it suitable for anyone who has difficulty swallowing softgels or capsules.
Best flaxseed oil: Barlean’s Flax Oil
|Total omega-3 per serving||7,640 mg per 1 tablespoon (15 ml)|
|Pros||vegan-friendly; is a liquid, which some people may prefer; non-GMO|
|Cons||high dosage; no EPA or DHA|
Barlean’s flax oil is a plant-based alternative to omega-3 oil. This 100% organic flaxseed oil is cold-pressed and contains 7,640 mg of ALA. This serving is much higher because only a small amount of ALA (less than
This versatile oil contains no additives, is sugar-free, and is suitable to consume straight from the spoon or mixed with foods, such as salad dressings.
The oil is certified organic by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Best vegan option: Care/of Veggie Omega
|Total omega-3 per serving||600 mg per 2 softgels|
|Pros||vegan-friendly; free of gluten, soy, and nuts; non-GMO|
|Cons||lower concentration of DHA and EHA; unclear whether the product is third-party tested|
Care/of’s Veggie Omega supplements are a vegetarian and vegan alternative to fish oils.
They contain a total of 600 mg of omega-3, with 360 mg of DHA and 180 mg of EHA.
The company claims it sources its omega-3 sustainably from microalgae and uses water extraction techniques.
Best for children: Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Gummies
|Total omega-3 per serving||82 mg per 2 gummies|
|Pros||free of artificial additives, gluten, dairy, and yeast; non-GMO; third-party tested|
The fish oil in Nordic Naturals’ omega-3 gummies comes from anchovies and sardines.
These child-friendly gummies are chewable and have a tangerine flavor.
Each serving contains 82 mg of total omega-3s and a combined 68 mg of DHA and EHA.
These gummies are suitable for children aged 2 years and over.
The table below compares the products listed in this article.
|Nordic Naturals ProOmega-D||for extra support||around $35||softgel|
|Nature Made Fish Oil with Vitamin D||for extra vitamin D3||around $20||softgel|
|Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega Liquid||for flavor||around $42||liquid|
|Kirkland Signature Natural Fish Oil Concentrate||for a budget||around $18||softgel|
|GNC Triple Strength Fish Oil Mini||mini capsule||around $28||softgel|
|Kaged Omega-3||for burp reduction||around $30||softgel|
|Elm and Rye Krill Oil||krill oil||around $45||softgel|
|Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil||cod liver oil||around $56||liquid|
|Wiley’s Finest Peak Omega-3 Liquid||high concentration||$36–62||liquid|
|Barlean’s Flax Oil||flaxseed oil||$12–45||liquid|
|Care/of Veggie Omega||vegan option||around $18||softgel|
|Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Gummies||for children||around $23||gummy|
When searching for a fish oil supplement, individuals may consider the following:
- Buying from a reputable company: A person can review a manufacturer’s reputation by checking its process transparency, reading independent customer reviews on websites such as Trustpilot or the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and researching how it sources its fish oil.
- Checking for certifications: Certifications offer verification of certain practices and ingredients. For fish oil, evidence of sustainable sourcing, impurity removal, and proof of quality may boost an individual’s confidence in a product.
- Picking the right form: Different people have different requirements when it comes to supplements. Considering their preference for softgels, liquids, capsules, or gummies may help a person choose.
Some studies show omega-3 to have health benefits,
- Reducing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis: A
2017 reviewof 22 studies noted that long-chain omega-3 supplements may help manage rheumatoid arthritis pain.
- Reducing triglyceride levels: Triglycerides are a type of fat that circulates in the blood. The body makes triglycerides, but it also gets them from food. However, high levels of triglycerides in the blood may lead to heart disease. Doctors
may prescribeomega-3s to lower triglyceride levels. However, an older studysuggests that omega-3 supplements do not lower the risk of heart attacks or strokes. Similarly, a 2018 reviewsuggests there is no evidence that omega-3 supplements lower the risk of heart disease.
- Reducing the risk of postpartum depression: A
2018 studysuggests that taking omega-3 supplements during pregnancy and postpartum helped reduce some symptoms of postpartum depression. It also reduced the risk of developing postpartum depression. However, more research is needed to better support these claims.
- Lowering stroke risk: A 2016 review from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) suggests that omega-3s may reduce the risk of ischemic strokes. However, the organization did not find evidence to suggest that it reduces the risk of all stroke types.
Omega-3s occur naturally in some foods, and manufacturers often add them to fortified foods. When it comes to sourcing fish oil, the exact process differs from company to company. Typically, a manufacturer will process whole fish, trimmings, and other fish byproducts for their oil.
Fish oils may benefit people with certain
- some eye diseases
- rheumatoid arthritis
- attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- age-related macular degeneration (AMD)
- Alzheimer’s disease
- heart disease
However, so far, no conclusive evidence points to any significant benefits of fish oil for those living with these conditions.
Fish oil supplements are typically safe for people to consume when used as recommended. However, although the supplements are mild, some people may experience
People with an allergy to iodine, fish, or shellfish should not take fish oil supplements.
There are also certain medications that may
If an individual has any health concerns, they should talk with a doctor or healthcare professional.
Here are some common questions relating to fish oil.
Is it better to take fish oil or omega-3?
Is it OK to take fish oil daily?
Yes. However, people should not take high doses of fish oil over an extended period. This may result in
The recommended omega-3 dosage varies and depends on a person’s biology, age, and health conditions.
Is EPA or DHA better?
Both EPA and DHA are important. Both are essential fatty acids that the human body needs, and one is not better than the other.
There are many fish oil supplements to choose from. Which one is best for an individual depends on their budget, concentration preference, and preferred supplement type.
Some supplements also contain additional vitamins and nutrients.
It is important to note that supplements should not replace food, and experts typically recommended them alongside a healthy diet. If a person is unsure whether they should take fish oil, or any other supplement, they should contact their doctor or qualified healthcare professional.