Fact: Omega-3 fats are essential to life.
Fact: Because our bodies can’t produce these fatty acids, we must consume them through diet.
Fact: There is a worldwide deficiency of omega-3s because of overfishing.
These hard truths are why Nordic Naturals vows to deliver the world’s safest, most effective omega oils and to correct the global omega-3 deficiency. But Kristina Phillips, educator at Nordic Naturals, explains that there are some important differences between the fatty acids in the omega-3 and omega-6 families that may create some confusion for consumers. The majority of vegetarian sources of omega-3 fatty acids contain only short-chain omega-3s or contain a significant amount of omega-6s (which inhibit absorption of omega-3s). To help solve this problem, Nordic Naturals has introduced two new vegetarian products while addressing these inequalities.
Nordic Naturals’ Algae Omega is 100 percent vegetarian and hexane-free. It’s derived from nongenetically modified organisms and contains a responsible dose of the beneficial long-chain omega-3s known as eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid. “Our bodies do not convert short-chain omega-3s to EPA or DHA efficiently,” Phillips says. “Furthermore, most algae-based omega-3 products contain only DHA. Scientific research continues to demonstrate that both these fatty acids are important to human health and together affect every biological function in the body.” Algae Omega is derived from algae grown indoors in large fermenters, which means it doesn’t affect fish populations or otherwise impact the health of our oceans.
The second product, Nordic GLA, provides a substantial dose of gamma-linolenic acid, a specific omega-6 that behaves very differently from the omega-6s Phillips says we’re overconsuming in our diets (unless, of course, you’re eating borage or evening primrose flowers). “The omega-6s that are found in large quantities in vegetable and seed oils, especially those used for high-heat cooking, promote the body’s inflammatory response,” Phillips says. “That is something we don’t want.” The benefits of consuming Nordic GLA, on the other hand, include additional support for the body’s natural anti-inflammatory response, enhanced hormonal balance and mood, and nourished hair, skin and nails.
Furthermore, “athletes need to consume more of these critical fatty acids than a sedentary person to keep the omega-3/6 balance in check and for general recovery,” Phillips says. “Also, for those who simply want to improve body composition or feel healthier, if you have the right amount of omega-3 fatty acids in your blood and tissues, it means you can work out harder and more often with less fatigue. Now that, in my opinion, is a positive and long-term health goal that can be life changing.”
Over the last eight years, Nordic Naturals has received 29 awards for product excellence. Every batch of oil used in Nordic Naturals’ products is third-party tested for environmental toxins, including heavy metals, dioxins and PCBs, ensuring that every product exceeds international pharmaceutical standards and is at least 750 times more pure than fish. With an eye on the environment, Nordic Naturals uses only wild-caught, sustainably sourced fish — including Arctic cod from the Norwegian Sea, Pacific sardines and Peruvian anchovies from the South Pacific Ocean, and Alaskan pink and sockeye salmon from the Cook Inlet — in its fish oils.