This dream team works together to keep your heart, bones and kidneys working at their best. Research even suggests that taking vitamin D and omega-3 can raise your levels of 'good' cholesterol and lower triglycerides (a type of fat found in your blood that can raise your risk of heart disease).
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Can omega-3 lower cholesterol?
Studies suggest that having enough omega-3 in your body can reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, and one of the reasons for this is that it may lower your cholesterol levels.
It’s suggested that omega-3 can increase the amount of good cholesterol in your blood, which in turn can decrease the amount of bad cholesterol.
However, you might only notice a decrease in your cholesterol levels if your bad cholesterol is already quite high, and you’re including a good amount of omega-3 in your diet and supplements.
Why is omega-3 important?
You can get a source of omega-3 from the food you eat, like eating fish twice a week, or by taking a supplement.
Not only does it contribute to your eye health and brain function, but it may even reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Omega-3 may even promote mental health benefits, from preventing anxiety and depression to reducing the symptoms of ADHD in children according to some studies.
How much vitamin D should I take?
The NHS recommends that everyone over the age of 4 should take 10 microgram vitamin D supplements during autumn and winter.
This is because we usually get vitamin D from sunlight hitting our skin and when the lovely British weather kicks in in the colder months it can be harder for us to catch those rays.
Although you can get vitamin D from your diet, it’s not the easiest vitamin to get enough of, which is why daily supplements step in to help.
If you’re someone who isn’t exposed to a lot of sunlight in general, you can take a vitamin D supplement all year round to help keep your levels up.
What are the symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency?
The trouble with a vitamin D deficiency is that it isn't always easy to spot.
Symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency can be subtle and you may not realise that you are deficient.
Signs of a vitamin D deficiency can include:
- Fatigue or tiredness
- Bone, joint or muscle pain
- Low mood or energy
- Being frequently ill
- Feeling anxious
- Weight gain
- Hair loss
A deficiency in children and babies can be quite dangerous, as it can lead to a disease called rickets.
This is a serious bone problem that can cause complications, such as bowed legs.
In which food is vitamin D found?
There are lots of food that can provide you with vitamin D, including fatty fish like tuna, salmon, and mackerel; dairy products, soy milk, orange juice, and cereals.
However, it is very difficult to get the recommended daily amount of vitamin D through your diet alone.
The NHS recommends people in the UK should take a 10 microgram supplement per day, but don’t exceed 100 micrograms (4,000 IU).
Can I take cod liver oil during pregnancy?
If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you may not be able to take cod liver oil, as some formulations contain vitamin A, which should be monitored during pregnancy.
If you would like to take cod liver oil at this time, speak to your doctor, health visitor, or pharmacist so they can tell you whether it would be safe and suitable for you.
Can I take vitamin D and cod liver oil together?
Yes, you can safely take vitamin D and cod liver oil together. Cod liver oil is naturally rich in vitamin D, too, so you may not need to add a vitamin D supplement to your routine. However, during the autumn and winter months when we aren’t getting enough sunlight, it’s advised to supplement your vitamin D.
Does cod liver oil contain vitamin D?
Yes, cod liver oil naturally contains vitamin D in addition to vitamin A. These added vitamins contribute to cod liver oil’s unique strengths.