Krill - Fish Oil Benefits Update 
By Walter Sorochan

Posted: August 18, 2013. Disclaimer  The information presented here is for informative and educational purposes only and is not intended as curative or prescriptive advice.

Salmon
salmon pink
Krill
krill
salmon pink krill oil2
Fish oil: Omega-3 DHA,  Less EPA Krill oil: DHA,  Lots of EPA, antioxidants, phospholipids

[ Everything you need to know as a consumer about krill - fish oils in one central location  ] 

Eating salmon is touted as good for your health due to the high omega-3 oils that lower your chances of a heart attack.  New research has discovered that krill has much higher amount of omega-3 fats than salmon [ not farm raised ]. Indeed, it is Omega-3 oil and ocean fish that are good for us while omega-6 rich processed foods, such as crackers, cookies and corn-fed beef, that are bad for us if we eat too much of them.  In spite of the population today consuming at least 20 times more omega-6s than omega-3s Wiki: omega-3 fatty acids , omega-3 sales are brisk. 

This health researcher received an e-mail advertisement trying to sell him a super omega oil supplement. The e-mail claimed that super omega was better than any other fish oil! This aroused this researcher's curiosity about fish oil, including "super mega oil,"  omega-3 and krill.  What is the best fish oil supplement? 

Benefits of Krill - fish oil: There is overwhelming evidence that a daily dose of krill oil and/or omega-3 fatty acids can improve and protect you from many disabling diseases and disorders. These benefits may include: NIH: Omega-3 & health 2005  Oz: omega-3 benefits 2010    Deutsch: Krill oil anti-inflammatory 2007   U Maryland: EPA overview 2013  WebMD: DHA overview  Consumer Reports: Krill vs fish oils 2012  Horrocks: DHA benefits 1999  Maki: Krill oil benefits 2009  Maroon: pain relief fish oils 2010  Simopoulos: Omega-3 vs inflammation 2002  Wong: Krill oil benefits 2013  Wiki: DHA  Wiki fish oil  OSU: review fish oil studies 2012

    061  Lubricating joints: Helps provide the lubrication joints need to function at an effective level. By keeping joints lubed, you experience less grinding and less overall wear and tear – and thereby – less pain as you age.
    061  Decrease inflammation in inflamed joints and arthritis.
    061  Fight wrinkles: As we age, fat cells in our skin's third layer thin out and tend to get a bit bumpier; omega-3s help make that layer thicker and smooth. The effect? Wrinkles go away and skin becomes fuller.
    061  Protect vision: Our eyes' retinas are a membranous structures and the whole eye is covered in a soft double layer of membranes, making your eyes' health dependent on the liver (who knew?). The liver helps metabolize fat-soluble vitamins that feed and maintain those membranes. If you're deficient in DHA, it affects how you see by delaying the system that converts light into neural energy in the retina.
    061  Lower triglycerides
    061  Reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes: Omega-3s reduce triglycerides, stabilize your make platelets "less sticky" and can even lower blood pressure. The EPA you get with your daily DHA dose helps prevent artery-blocking clots and irregular heartbeat. The Iowa Nurses Study [and 3 others] found that 1 ounce of nuts a day decreased the incidence of heart disease between 20 and 60 percent.
    061  Attack Acne: It may surprise you to know that an inadequate intake of omega-3 fatty acids contributes to breakout-prone skin. Trade sugar (and meat) for avocados, walnuts, salmon or trout to help control acne.
    061  Clear cholesterol: Boosts levels of HDL (the good cholesterol) and helps clear your arteries.
    061  Boost the brain: In keeping your arteries clear, you're immediately improving brain function. They also alter your neurotransmitters to help reduce depression.
    061  Enhance fertility: Improves fertility rates in both males and females by improving sperm's swimming ability and the environment for implantation in women.
    061  Prerequisite for pregnancy : Omega-3 fatty acids directly affect brain development, making it crucial for expectant mothers. Additionally, research indicates they decrease a mother's risk of depression. When the mother doesn't have enough of these essential fatty acids, the baby borrows from her. Some prenatal vitamins now include omega-3s, so be sure to check the label or grab a handful of walnuts each day.
    061  Improve mental health: EPA in particular may possess some beneficial potential in mental conditions, such as schizophrenia.
    061  Slows aging and onset of Alzheimer disease. Rate of aging is determined by the rate of telomere shortening and can be monitored by the Omega-3 Index.
    061  Reduce menstrual pain: Fish oil appears to reduce the pain of menstrual cramps when taken on a regular basis [not just when menstruating].
    061  Minimize lupus: Two small studies suggested that fish oil reduced fatigue and joint pain from lupus.
    061  Minimize Raynaud Syndrome: Several studies show that high doses (12 g) of fish oil can make fingers and toes less sensitive to cold when people have Raynaud syndrome. Doses this high should be taken only under a doctor's supervision.
    061  Minimize Diabetes: Fish oil supplementation may also reduce high blood pressure in people with diabetes.
    061  Minimize psoriasis.

Documentation supporting the above benefits is weak! This may be because the research control designs were flawed; although the researchers themselves may not be aware of this.  For example: researchers assumed that their research design could focus on one nutrient and ignore the impact that other nutrients [ co-factors ] could have in helping the principal nutrient function [ bioavailability ].   Had researchers accounted for co-factor variables, their flawed research outcome would have been entirely different and they would have had different health outcomes! 

Another major reason that the documentation may be weak is that double-blind design studies are time consuming and very expensive [ $ 300,000,000 per study ] to carry out. Most such expensive studies are conducted by pharmaceutical companies with anticipation of making huge profits.  Unfortunately, many nutrients like krill oil occur naturally in mother nature and cannot be exclusively patented nor copyrighted.  Hence, no profit - no research in the free enterprise system! In such circumstances, we need the help from the federal government to conduct independent research on the validity of health benefits from fish and krill oils; but such funding is not forthcoming.

Super mega oil?  This is a 'catch a buyer' advertizing gimmick!  It may be a mixture of omega-3 and krill oils that have a high concentration of EPA, DHA, and other nutrients such as vitamin E.   This label product is misleading and does not necessarily mean that this is a good or better supplement.

biomag5 Biomagnification:  Fish do not actually produce omega-3 fatty acids, but instead accumulate them by consuming either microalgae or prey fish that have accumulated omega-3 fatty acids, together with a high quantity of antioxidants such as iodide and selenium, from microalgae, where these antioxidants are able to protect the fragile polyunsaturated lipids from peroxidation. Fatty predatory fish like sharks, swordfish, tilefish, salmon and albacore tuna may be high in omega-3 fatty acids, but due to their position at the top of the food chain, these species can also accumulate toxic substances through biomagnification.  Wiki fish oil

What is omega-3?  There are 3 basic forms of omega-3:  Oz: omega-3 benefits 2010 

  • Alpha-linelenic acid [ALA] is found in plants in small quantities, like walnuts and vegetable oils like flaxseed, soybean and olive which the human body eventually converts to DHA. ALA, an essential fatty acid [EFA], is a short-chain omega-3 that serves as a source of energy and as a building block for long-chain omega-3 fatty acids [DHA and EPA]. 
  • Docosahexaenoic acid [DHA] is found primarily in cold water fish and krill and originates from microalgae Cold-water oceanic fish oils are rich in DHA.  Wiki: DHA  DHA is an omega-3 fatty acid that is found in every cell throughout the body, EPA is not.   DHA is a primary structural component of the human brain, cerebral cortex, skin, sperm, testicles and retina.  It can be synthesized from alpha-linolenic acid or obtained directly from maternal milk or fish oil.  DHA is the most abundant omega-3 in the brain and retina and is naturally found in breast milk.
  •   "DHA is essential for the growth and functional development of the brain in infants. DHA is also required for maintenance of normal brain function in adults. The inclusion of plentiful DHA in the diet improves learning ability, whereas deficiencies of DHA are associated with deficits in learning. DHA is taken up by the brain in preference to other fatty acids. The turnover of DHA in the brain is very fast, more so than is generally realized. The visual acuity of healthy, full-term, formula-fed infants is increased when their formula includes DHA.  DHA deficiencies are associated with foetal alcohol syndrome, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, movement disorder dyspraxia in children, cystic fibrosis, phenylketonuria, unipolar depression, aggressive hostility, and adrenoleukodystrophy. Decreases in DHA in the brain are also associated with cognitive decline during aging and with onset of sporadic Alzheimer disease."  Horrocks: DHA benefits 1999  Most people get far too little of this all-important fatty acid.
  • Eicosapentaenoic acid [EPA] is also found in the flesh of coldwater krill and fish. EPA is a long-chain omega-3 fatty acid important for overall health. However, unlike DHA, the body does not store EPA in significant quantities in the brain or retina. EPA can prevent the blood from clotting easily. These fatty acids also reduce pain and swelling.  EPA is present in higher amounts than DHA in krill and fish.   

Key health benefits of including omega-3 fatty acids in your diet:  Kim: Omega-3 sense

    1. Omega-3 fatty acids can help keep your heart and blood vessels healthy. In doing so, they can reverse and prevent high blood pressure, as well as reduce your risk of suffering a stroke.
    2.Omega-3 fatty acids can decrease pain and inflammation throughout your body.
    3.Omega-3 fatty acids may help prevent breast and colon cancer.
    4.Omega-3 fatty acids can help reverse and prevent depression and other mental/emotional health disorders.

Omega-3 fatty acids are called essential fatty acids because your body cannot synthesize them from other nutrients; you must obtain them from your foods such as fish, and supplements such as krill and fish oil supplements.

krill krillKrill are tiny crustaceans [ species Euphausia superba, approximately, 1 to 6 centimeters long ] similar in appearance to small pink-red colored shrimps but found in the Arctic and Antarctic oceans.  The algae that krill eat produces the bright red pigment astaxanthin that gives krill and other crustaceans such as lobster and shrimp their reddish-pink color.   In Norwegian, the word "krill" means "whale food." Baleen whales, mantas, penguins and whale sharks primarily eat  krill.   People extract the oil from krill, place it in capsules, and use it as a supplement or for medicine. 

Ratio omega-3 to omega-6:  The lack of a universal standard ratio for omega-3 : omega-6 has evolved controversy about what a beneficial health ratio should be. Today, the usual diet in industrial countries contains much less omega-3 fatty acids than the diet of a century ago. The diet from a century ago had much less omega-3 than the diet of early hunter-gatherers.  We can also look at the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 in comparisons of their diets.  Today we tend to consume far too many Omega-6 fatty acids from meat, dairy produce and vegetable oils such as safflower, sunflower, corn, sesame and groundnut oil.  These changes have been accompanied by increased rates of many diseases – the so-called diseases of civilization – that involve inflammatory processes. There is now very strong evidence that several of these diseases are ameliorated by increasing dietary omega-3, and good evidence for many others. There is also more preliminary evidence showing that dietary omega-3 can ease symptoms in several psychiatric disorders.   "Omega−6 and omega−3 need to be consumed in a balanced proportion; healthy ratios of omega−6:omega−3, according to some authors, range from 1:1 to 1:4 (an individual needs more omega−3 than omega−6). Other authors believe that ratio 4:1 (when the amount of omega-6 is only 4 times greater than that of omega-3) is already healthy." Wiki: omega-3 fatty acids

If you are eating cold-sea salmon one or two times a week, you probably do not need to supplement with omega-3 fatty oils.

The table below illustrates the naturally occurring ratios of the two omegas in natural and processed foods.  It is interesting to note that fresh salmon from cold water, fresh cod and flax seeds have omega ratios that anthropologists relate to healthy diets many centuries ago. 

Food Citation Serving Size Omega-3  (g) Omega 6  (g) Omega-3 : omega-6 ratio
Salmon, cold water, fresh and frozen, cooked [2] 4 oz (113g) 1.7 0.3 5.7 : 1
Sardines, canned in oil, drained [2] 4 oz 1.8 4.0 0.45 : 1
Tuna, canned in water, drained [2] 4 oz 0.3 Trace 3 : 0
Tuna, canned in oil, drained [2] 4 oz 0.2 3.0 0.07 : 1
Cod, fresh and frozen [2] 4 oz 0.6 0.1 6 : 1
Almonds, dry roasted [2] 1 oz 0 0.5 0 : 1
Walnuts [2] 1 oz 2.6 10.8 0.24 : 1
Flax seeds [2] 1 oz 1.8 0.4 4.5 : 1
Wiki: Ratio of omega fatty acids Citation: 2 = Tufts University, September, 2010.

Krill oil is a mixture of fatty acids high in EPA and DHA in the form of phospholipids, mostly as Phosphatidylcholine; this allows krill oil to be better absorbed than fish oil.

Don’t confuse unsaturated fatty acids DHA with EPA.  They are both in fish oil, but they are not the same. DHA can be converted into EPA in the human body.

Superba Krill Oil from Aker Biomarine U-Tube 4. 08 mns
 
Source: : Aker Biomarine

HOW KRILL WORKS:  Krill oil contains fatty acids similar to fish oil. Krill oil contains higher amounts of astaxanthin than fish oil.  These fats are thought to be beneficial fats that decrease swelling, lower cholesterol, and make blood platelets less sticky. When blood platelets are less sticky they are less likely to form clots.

Astaxanthin is an antioxidant that crosses the blood-brain barrier, where it could theoretically protect the eye, brain and central nervous system from free radical damage.  [ Antioxidants protect our body cells from the damage of free radicals by removing them.  Free radicals are unstable substances that are thought to contribute to certain chronic diseases. ]   Wong: Krill oil benefits 2013

krill benefits
Source: Viva Lab: Krill oil benefits

Krill oil vs fish oil:  There is a lot of debate about the effectiveness of krill oil as opposed to fish oil due to the levels of EPA and DHA.   Compared to fish oil, krill oil offers better bioavailability [ That is, the absorption of krill-fish oil from the small intestine into the blood stream, as well as utilization by other body cells. ] and is more resistant to rancidity.  It also doesn't have any fishy aftertaste or side effects even at high dosages. But perhaps topping the list of differences is its being free from mercury contamination, which may be found in most fish and seafood from the lakes, rivers, streams and oceans.  Krill is harvested wild in the cold, unpolluted seas surrounding Antarctica and is thus usually free from mercury and heavy metals.  Consumer Reports: Krill vs fish oils 2012 

There are differences between omega-3 found in both fish-oil and krill-oil supplements that supply the healthful omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA. Krill oil comes from small crustaceans, not fatty fish, and typically contains more EPA than fish. And unlike conventional fish-oil pills, krill oil’s omega-3s are linked to an antioxidant and other potentially beneficial substances called phospholipids, which are also found in the brain and other human cell walls.  Consumer Reports: Krill vs fish oils 2012  Phospholipids on cell walls allow the krill oil to be absorbed much faster and in greater quantities than fish oil. 

Dosage KRILL OIL & Omega-3: 

There is no standard EPA to DHA ratio in fish oil. While all fish contain both EPA and DHA, different species contain varying levels and manufacturers freely manipulate the ratios during processing. So the ratio is entirely at the discretion of the manufacturer. Furthermore, the only consensus reached by the scientific community regarding a recommended ratio is confined to heart benefits and even that is a bit confusing.  Coad:EPA/DHA Ratio 2011  Consumer Reports: Krill vs fish oils 2012

"The National Institutes of Health convened an international panel of experts to determine a recommended dietary intake for omega-3 derived from fish oil. EPA and DHA are classified as omega-3 fatty acids. The results were published in the October 1999 issue of the "Journal of the American College of Nutrition." The primary investigators were experts in infant nutrition, cardiovascular disease and mental health. They concluded by endorsing 650 mg combined DHA and EPA for cardiovascular benefits in a ratio of 2-to-1. However it doesn't matter which one is greater -- just that one amount is twice that of the other." Coad:EPA/DHA Ratio 2011

The appropriate dose of krill oil depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for krill oil. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using. WebMD: DHA overview  Be as this may be, research studies give us a clue as to what may be considered appropriate dosage:

Dosage Adults: Although there is NO adequate daily intake of EPA for adults, the minimum amount per day should be at least 220 mg/day. ConsumerLab identified best supplements for fish and krill oil and found that these have several hundred milligrams of EPA and DHA [ a typical daily dose is 300 mg to 500 mg ]. Consumer Lab Report 2013 


Omega fatty oils videos  Dr Oz: U-Tube video information about omega-3 and omega-6; fish and krill oils:
You may be taking the WRONG Omega-3 fish oil supplements
Part I: Oz: omega-3 info
Part II: Dr. Oz Explains Omega-3s and Fatty Acids

Safety precautions: If you take a supplement and/or medications, consult a doctor because krill oil and fish oil may interact with some drugs, including blood thinners. Fish-oil supplements are probably safe for most people in doses of 3 grams or less a day. There are no formal standards for krill oil, but the U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP), a nonprofit authority that works to verify supplements, is developing them.  Consumer Reports: Krill vs fish oils 2012

Krill oil seems to be safe for most adults when used appropriately for a short amount of time [up to three months]. It is likely that krill oil can cause some side effects similar to fish oil such as bad breath, heartburn, fishy taste, upset stomach, nausea, and loose stools.

Special Precautions & Warnings: Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of krill oil during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use if pregnant and consult with your doctor.

Seafood allergy and side-effects: Some people who are allergic to seafood might also be allergic to krill oil supplements. There is no reliable information showing how likely people with seafood allergy are to have an allergic reaction to krill oil; however, until more is known, avoid using krill oil or use it cautiously if you have a seafood allergy.  Wong: Krill oil benefits 2013

Surgery: Because krill oil can slow blood clotting, there is concern that it might increase the risk of bleeding during and after surgery. Stop using krill oil at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.  WebMD: DHA overview  

KRILL OIL Interactions   Be cautious with this combination:

  • Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs interact with KRILL OIL
  • Krill oil might slow blood clotting. Taking krill oil along with medications that also slow clotting might increase the chances of bruising and bleeding.
  • Some medications that slow blood clotting include aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), diclofenac (Voltaren, Cataflam, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen (Anaprox, Naprosyn, others), dalteparin (Fragmin), enoxaparin (Lovenox), heparin, warfarin (Coumadin), and others.  WebMD: DHA overview

Minor Interaction with this combination: Orlistat [Xenical, Alli] interacts with KRILL OIL.  Orlistat is used for weight loss. It prevents dietary fats from being absorbed from the gut. There is some concern that orlistat might also decrease absorption of krill oil when they are taken together. To avoid this potential interaction take orlistat and krill oil at least 2 hours apart. WebMD: DHA overview

Supplement Product Purity:

Krill-fish oil buyers need to be aware that many fish and krill oil supplements may be contaminated with PCBs, vitamin E and/or comingled with oils and even mislabed.  ConsumerLab: fish oil PCB contamination 2012

There are many problems with modern cod liver oil but one of the primary ones is that there is no standard definition of what constitutes cod liver oil. Manufacturers use processes that remove natural occurring vitamin A:D ratio and then add or subtract as much vitamin A or D as they see fit. This is adds controversy about the safety of current cod liver oil supplements as well as krill and fish oils. Mercola: Cod liver oil safety 2008  Gurd: Cod liver oil contro 2009  Look for a ratio balance for vitamin A:D to be 1:5-10 and EPA:DHA ratio to be approximately 1:2. 

A private laboratory, ConsumerLab, tested numerous commercial supplements of fish oil, krill oil, algal oil, and calamari oil.  Their finding revealed quality problems with 11 out of 35 of these omega-3 fatty acid supplements selected for review. You can find more information at  Consumer Lab Report 2013 

Cost & best buy: On a more positive note, ConsumerLab.com found many high quality products -- ones that passed all tests. It identified those with the best prices for fish and krill oil and found that you can get several hundred milligrams of EPA and DHA [ a typical daily dose is 300 mg to 500 mg ] for just a few cents a day from top-rated products. Consumer Lab Report 2013  For example, ConsumerLab recommended  Swanson Krill oil supplements because of the low cost, freshness, Antarctic purity, quality and enteric-coating performance of the krill oil supplement.  Ofcourse you are free to shop for other ConsumerLab.com recommended marketers of supplements

Best sources for Omega-3 fatty acids: 

1. Best source is from food:  U.S. News has written about: 8 easy ways to load up on omega-3s from food sources.  Good sources of alpha-linolenic acid [ALA] are leafy green vegetables, nuts, and vegetable oils such as canola, soy, and especially flaxseed. Good sources of EPA and DHA are fish like cold water arctic salmon [not pond grown ] and sardines.  Linolenic Acid [LA] is found in many foods, including meat, vegetable oils [ e.g., safflower, sunflower, corn, soy ], and processed foods made with these oils. Martinsen: wrong omega-3 2013

If you are like most persons who do not get enough omega-3 from the food they eat, then you need to consider omega-3 supplements. 

2. Second best source may be Cod liver oil: as best liquid omega-3 form supplement because it has all the natural co-factor [helper] nutrients [ e.g. vitamins A, D, C, E, foliate, etc., ] in the proper ratio amounts, as well as ALA, DHA and EPA and it is inexpensive.  Natural liquid fish oils provide as much EPA and DHA as concentrated omega-3 products.  But since cod liver oil can become rancid and spoil, order small quantities for short periods of time and store in refrigerator.

But a word of caution: There are many problems with modern cod liver oil and one of the primary ones is that there is no standard definition of what constitutes cod liver oil. Manufacturers use processes that remove natural occurring vitamin A:D ratio and then add or subtract as much vitamin A or D as they see fit. This is adds controversy about the safety of current cod liver oil supplements. Mercola: Cod liver oil safety 2008  Gurd: Cod liver oil contro 2009 Look for a ratio balance for vitamin A:D to be 1:5-10 and EPA:DHA ratio to be approximately 1:2. 

3. Krill oil supplement: This is the third best option, because Phospholipids on human cell walls allows the krill oil to be absorbed much faster and in greater quantities than fish oil. Krill oil has omega-3 fatty acids, is significantly better utilized than fish oil. But it has also been synthesized and natural co-factor nutrients have probably been removed or destroyed. 

4. Fish oil omega-3 is the fourth good option as a supplement. But be aware of undisclosed contaminants and fatty acid ratios. 

Do your homework:  Read the label and ask the trusted seller for evidence:

  • Request Certificate of Analysis [CofA] Brown: CofA 2008 
  • Where the product [ krill ] harvested?
  • Krill genus?
  • How it is harvested, processed and packaged? 
  • Purity: Is it free of contaminants?
  • How is the supplement safeguarded against animal waste pollution?
  • How is the supplement safeguarded against radiation fallout? Radiation testing 2012
  • % biogradeability? How much is absorbed from the digestive system into the blood by the human body?
  • Ratio of EPA:DHA is approximately 2:1 or visa vera
  • Co-factors like vitamins A, D, foliate and minerals like iodine listed
  • daily dose of combined fatty acids is 300 mg to 500 mg
  • Documentation to back up their claims?

Another Caution:   When comparing different omega-3 supplements, the first thing you want to do is check the amount of EPA and DHA on the label. The EPA:DHA ratio should be 2:1. A label listing a combined EPA+DHA per 1000 mg is misleading.  A supplement with a higher percentage of EPA and DHA will provide more benefit per pill than one with a lower percentage.  After reviewing numerous research, the missing link is the unknown and unreliable ratio amount of vitamin A:D as well as unlisted other co-factor nutrients. 

Conclusion:  This author had great expectations of finding information to help all of us make good decisions about purchasing and using omega-3 fatty acid supplements.  My expectations have been tempered with what I found out.  In this free market  consumer world, it is hard to find safe, good supplements.  Who do you believe? 

There are many sellers of Omega-3 fatty acid supplements.  There are no fatty acid oil standards and you should expect manufacturers to formulate fish-krill oils that may be bad and good.  Hopefully you have enough information to help you make some good buy decisions. Read the labels and ask questions!  You may need to experiment with several omega-3 brands and dosage over several months before finding one that works best for you.  Keep in mind that it may take several months for the omega-3 supplement you are taking to kick in and activate the health benefits you are anticipating! 

For more health information: Click here

Feedback to author: E-mail

References:

Aker Biomarine, "Superba™ Krill Oil NDI Notification Accepted by FDA (24.05.11)."   Aker Biomarine Krill oil company Info "Aker BioMarine is a Norwegian fishing and biotech company providing krill products through a fully documented and secured catch and process chain. Based in Oslo, Aker BioMarine is part of the Aker Group The company also created ECO-HARVESTING™ or Eco-Harvesting™. Aker BioMarine was established as an independent enterprise in 2006."

Request for information:

To: Eric Anderson; Aker BioMarine
From: Walter Sorochan, Emeritus Professor: San Diego State University
Date: August 14, 2013
RE: Your Superba Krill oil;

My wife bought a krill oil supplement without doing her homework. So I decided to do my own independent research on omega-3 fatty acid oils and found your product superba krill oil. Your supplement is touted to be the best on the market for various reasons.

In reviewing your web-site literature, I could not find information about the following:
1. Your precise processing technique to extract the fatty acids from krill. Just what do you extract?
2. What is the ratio of EPA:DHA?
3. Does your processing system remove the naturally occurring nutrients like vitamins A, D, and accompanying minerals?
4. If these nutrients are removed from the krill during the oil process, then do you put these back again later on? If so, what ratios do you use?
5. What are the co-factors in the krill oil that are mother nature’s helpers in biogradability?
6. What is the % biogradeability of your krill oil supplement? How much is actually absorbed from the digestive system into the blood in young vs older persons? Do you have research on this?
7. Can you share your Certificate of Analysis [CofA] Brown: CofA 2008 ?
8. Is your harvested krill oil altered in any way by marketers like Swanson Health Products?
9. Do you test for animal contaminants and radiation?
10. Can you share your research references?

Thank you for your help and prompt response,
Walter Sorochan

Response Aug 20, 2013: Eric Anderson.
Hi Professor Sorochan,
I've passed both requests onto Aker, they will need to respond.
The best place to buy Superba is in Schiff's MegaRed at Costco
Best, Eric Anderson 732-725-5191
Please note that he is no longer working for Aker BioMarine Antarctic as of April 1, 2013.

Baldauf Sarah, "Fish Oil Supplements, EPA, DHA, and ALA: Does Your Omega-3 Source Matter?" US News Health, April 8, 2009.   Baldauf: choice controversies 2009  [ How to choose between fish and nuts—or between fish oil capsules and vegetarian omega-3 pills. ]

Bunea R., El Farrah K, Deutsch L., Evaluation of the effects of Neptune Krill Oil on the clinical course of hyperlipidemia. Altern Med Rev., 2004, 9.4: 420-428. Buena: krill oil lowers cholesterol 2004

"CONCLUSIONS: The results of the present study demonstrate within high levels of confidence that krill oil is effective for the management of hyperlipidemia by significantly reducing total cholesterol, LDL, and triglycerides, and increasing HDL levels. At lower and equal doses, krill oil was significantly more effective than fish oil for the reduction of glucose, triglycerides, and LDL levels."

Clark WF, Kortas C, Heidenheim AP, Garland J, Spanner E, Parbtani A., "Flaxseed in lupus nephritis: a two-year nonplacebo-controlled crossover study," Am Coll Nutr., 2001, 20(2 Suppl):143-148.   Clark: lupus flaxseed 2001

Coad Tanya Louise, "The EPA/DHA Ratio in Fish Oil," Livestrong.com, July 18, 2011   Coad:EPA/DHA Ratio 2011

ConsumerLab.com, "CONSUMERLAB.COM FINDS FISH OIL SUPPLEMENTS FREE OF MERCURY, BUT 30% LACKING IN KEY INGREDIENT — Test Results of Omega-3 Fatty Acid (EPA and DHA) Products Released Today â€,”   ConsumerLab: Report EPA & DHA 2001

ConsumerLab.com, "Contamination and Other Problems Found in Fish Oil Supplements -- Large Review by ConsumerLab.com Reveals Excessive PCBs or Mislabeling in Over 30% of Omega-3 Supplements – August 22, 2012.   ConsumerLab: fish oil PCB contamination 2012  "In the ConsumerLab.com product review, fish oil and omega-3 supplements were tested for freshness, purity, quality and enteric-coating performance. "

ConsumerLab.com, "Product Review: Fish Oil and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements Review (Including Krill, Algae, and Calamari Oil," July 14, 2013.   Consumer Lab Report 2013  "In the ConsumerLab.com product review, fish oil and omega-3 supplements were tested for freshness, purity, quality and enteric-coating performance. "

Consumer Reports, "Are krill-oil pills as good as fish oil? Both supply omega 3s, but there are differences," Consumer Reports on Health: June, 2012.   ConsConsumer Reports: Krill vs fish oils 2012

Deutsch L. ,Evaluation of the effect of Neptune Krill Oil on chronic inflammation and arthritic symptoms. J Am Coll Nutr., 2007, 26.1: 39-48. Deutsch: Krill oil anti-inflammatory 2007

"CONCLUSION: The results of the present study clearly indicate that NKO at a daily dose of 300 mg significantly inhibits inflammation and reduces arthritic symptoms within a short treatment period of 7 and 14 days. "

Duffy EM, GK Meenagh, SA McMillan, JJ Strain, BM Hannigan and AL Bell, "The clinical effect of dietary supplementation with omega-3 fish oils and/or copper in systemic lupus erythematosus" The Journal of Rheumatology, (2004, 31 (8): 1551–1556.  Duffy: lupus & omega-3 2004

Dr Oz, "Daily Dose: Omega-3," The Dr. Oz Show, June 03, 2010.   Oz: omega-3 benefits 2010

Gurd Vreni, "The cod liver oil controversy," Nutrition and Life, January 17, 2009.   Gurd: Cod liver oil contro 2009

Horrocks Lloyd A., & Young K. Yeo, " Health benefits of Docosahexaenoic acid [DHA]," Pharmacological Research, September, 1999, Volume 40, Issue 3, Pages 211–225.   Horrocks: DHA benefits 1999

Kim Ben, "Making Sense of Omega-3 Fatty Acids,"   Kim: Omega-3 sense

Kim Hee-Yong, "Biochemical and Biological Functions of Docosahexaenoic Acid in the Nervous System: Modulation by Ethanol," Chem Phys Lipids. May, 2008,  153(1): 34–46.  Kim:DHA biochemistry 2008

"The research aim of our laboratory has been to elucidate the biochemical and biological mechanisms supporting the need for this particular fatty acid in the central nervous system. Numerous studies have indicated that DHA is essential for proper neuronal and retinal functions. Dietary supplementation of DHA during infancy has been shown to improve mental development in humans."

King Michael W., "Omega-3 & omega-6 fatty acid synthesis, metabolism & functions," February 9, 2013.   King: Omega-3 synthesis functions 2013

"Feb 9, 2013 - The omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acid page provides a detailed description of the structure, synthesis, metabolism and functions of these fatty acids.  Most of the omega-6 PUFAs consumed in the diet are from vegetable oils such as soybean oil, corn oil, borage oil, and acai berry and consist of linoleic acid. Linoleic acid is converted to arachidonic acid. The anti-inflammatory actions of omega-3 polysaturated fatty acids [UFAs ] can exert potent insulin sensitizing effects.

It is important to denote that when discussing omega-3 fatty acids, their dietary origin is quite important. Omega-3 fats from plants, such as those in flax seed oil, are enriched in α-linolenic acid [ALA]. As indicated above, ALA must first be converted to EPA (requiring three independent reactions) and then to DHA (requiring and additional four reactions). Omega-3 fats from fish are enriched in EPA and DHA and thus do not need to undergo the complex conversion steps required of ALA. In addition, the conversion of ALA to EPA and DHA is inefficient in individuals consuming a typical Western diet rich in animal fats."

Kyle D. J., E. Schaefer, G. Patton, A. Beiser, "Low serum docosahexaenoic acid is a significant risk factor for alzheimer’s dementia," Lipids, 1999, Volume 34, Issue 1 Supplement, p S245.   Kyle: DHA & Alzheimers 1999

Maki KC, Reeves MS, Farmer M, Griinari M, Berge K, Vik H, Hubacher R, Rains TM, "Krill oil supplementation increases plasma concentrations of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids in overweight and obese men and women," Nutr Res., September 29, 2009, (9):609-15.   Maki: Krill oil benefits 2009

"In conclusion, 4 weeks of krill oil supplementation increased plasma EPA and DHA and was well tolerated, with no indication of adverse effects on safety parameters.

Mercola Joseph, "Important Cod Liver Oil Update," Mercola.com, December 23, 2008.   Mercola: Cod liver oil safety 2008

Maroon Joseph, MD, and Jeff Bost, Fish Oil:  BOOK: The Natural Anti-Inflammatory, Basic Health Publications, Inc.,  2006.

"The book focuses on the many benefits of fish oil supplements scientifically documented in over 900 clinical studies in treating such conditions as arthritis, spine pain, heart and vascular disease, depression and even very promising research on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Diseases. The book explains the basic process of inflammation and the factors that cause inflammation to be a chronic condition."

Maroon Joseph C., Jeffrey W. Bost, and Adara Maroon, "Natural anti-inflammatory agents for pain relief," Surg Neurol Int., December 13, 2010.   Maroon: pain relief fish oils 2010

"A recent study of 250 patients with cervical and lumbar disc disease, who were taking NSAIDs, revealed that 59% could substitute fish oil supplements as a natural anti-inflammatory agent for the NSAIDs."

Martinsen Bo, "7 Reasons Why the Omega-3 Industry is on the Wrong Track," The Omega3 Innovations Blog, 2013.   Martinsen: wrong omega-3 2013

National Institutes of Health, "Omega-3 fatty acids and health," Office of Dietary Supplement." Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet.  October 28, 2005.  NIH: Omega-3 & health 2005  "This document summarizes the results of eight evidence-based reviews on the effects of omega-3 fatty acids from food or dietary-supplement sources for the prevention and treatment of several diseases. "October 28, 2005

Omega-3 Index  Omega-3 index test  "The omega-3 index is an indicator of the amount of EPA and DHA relative to the amount of phospholipid fatty acids present in the individual’s sample.  It can be used as an indicator of risk for SCD and non-fatal cardiovascular events and as a therapeutic target.   The index can also be used to assess patient compliance with omega-3 therapy and/or success or failure of such therapy (relative to the target index)." There are many laboratories offering this test analysis. 

Oregon State University, "Analysis of fish oil studies finds that omega-3 fatty acids still matter," November 28, 2012.   OSU: review fish oil studies 2012

Peet Malcolm, Jan Brind, C.N. Ramchand, Sandeep Shah, G.K. Vankar, "Two double-blind placebo-controlled pilot studies of eicosapentaenoic acid in the treatment of schizophrenia," Schizophrenia Research, May 9, 2000, Volume 49, Issue 3 , Pages 243-251.   Peet: EPA schizophrenia treats 2000

"Patients taking EPA had significantly lower scores on the PANSS rating scale by the end of the study. It is concluded that EPA may represent a new treatment approach to schizophrenia, and this requires investigation by large-scale placebo-controlled trials.";

Press Rachael, "The Omega-3 Fatty Acid Composition and Cost Analysis of Fish Oil Supplements: Fishing for the Best Deals," Department of Human Nutrition, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA. June, 2011. Press: cost supplement comparisons 2011

Reinagel Monica, Fish oil vs Krill," Quick and Dirty Tips, February 21, 2012.  Reinagel:omega-3 compasisons 2012

Schaefer Ernst J., and others, "Plasma Phosphatidylcholine Docosahexaenoic Acid Content and Risk of Dementia and Alzheimer Disease The Framingham Heart Study," JAMA Neurology, November 2006, Vol 63, No. 11.   Schaefer: DHA & dementia 2006

Sears Barry, "What Are the Real Differences Between EPA and DHA?" In the Zone, April 1, 2012.   Sears: EPA-DHA diffrences 2012

Simopoulos, A. P. . "Omega-3 fatty acids in inflammation and autoimmune diseases." J Am Coll Nutr.,  2002, 21(6): 495-505. Simopoulos: Omega-3 vs inflammation 2002

" Among the fatty acids, it is the omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) which possess the most potent mmunomodulatory activities, and among the omega-3 PUFA, those from fish oil-eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)--are more biologically potent than alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Some of the effects of omega-3 PUFA are brought about by modulation of the amount and types of eicosanoids made, and other effects are elicited by eicosanoid-independent mechanisms, including actions upon intracellular signaling pathways, transcription factor activity and gene expression. Animal experiments and clinical intervention studies indicate that omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties and, therefore, might be useful in the management of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Coronary heart disease, major depression, aging and cancer are characterized by an increased level of interleukin 1 (IL-1), a proinflammatory cytokine. Similarly, arthritis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis and lupus erythematosis are autoimmune diseases characterized by a high level of IL-1 and the proinflammatory leukotriene LTB(4) produced by omega-6 fatty acids. There have been a number of clinical trials assessing the benefits of dietary supplementation with fish oils in several inflammatory and autoimmune diseases in humans, including rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, psoriasis, lupus erythematosus, multiple sclerosis and migraine headaches. Many of the placebo-controlled trials of fish oil in chronic inflammatory diseases reveal significant benefit, including decreased disease activity and a lowered use of anti-inflammatory drugs."

University of Maryland Medical Center, "Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) Overview," updated: May 31, 2013.   U Maryland: EPA overview 2013

Viva Labs, "Krill Oil – Behind The Curtain."   Viva Labs: Krill oil info

Walton AJ, Snaith ML, Locniskar M, Cumberland AG, Morrow WJ, Isenberg DA., "Dietary fish oil and the severity of symptoms in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus," Ann Rheum Dis., July, 1991, 50(7):463-6.   Walton lupus & fish oil 1991

"A double-blind, placebo-controlled study indicates that fish oil supplements in the amount of 3 grams per day may benefit patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). "

WebMD, "DHA [DOCOSAHEXAENOIC ACID] Overview Information."   WebMD: DHA overview

Wikipedia,"Docosahexaenoic acid."[DHA]  Wiki: DHA

"Primary structural component of the human brain, cerebral cortex, skin, sperm, testicles and retina. It can be synthesized from alpha-linolenic acid or obtained directly from maternal milk or fish oil. Cold-water oceanic fish oils are rich in DHA."

Wikipedia, "Eicosapentaenoic acid." [EPA]   Wiki:EPA

"Fish do not naturally produce EPA, but obtain it from the algae they consume. The human body converts alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) to EPA. ALA is itself an essential fatty acid, an appropriate supply of which must be ensured. The efficiency of the conversion of ALA to EPA, however, is much lower than the absorption of EPA from food containing it.   EPA in particular may possess some beneficial potential in mental conditions, such as schizophrenia. Studies have suggested that EPA may be efficacious in treating depression. One 2004 study, took blood samples of 100 suicide attempt patients and compared the blood samples to those of controls and found that levels of eicosapentaenoic acid were significantly lower in the washed red blood cells of the suicide-attempt patients. A 2009 metastudy found that patients taking omega-3 supplements with a higher EPA:DHA ratio experienced less depressive symptoms."

Wikipedia, "Fish oils."  Wiki fish oil

Wikipedia, "Omega-3 fatty acids." Wiki: omega-3 fatty acids
"Omega−6 and omega−3 need to be consumed in a balanced proportion; healthy ratios of omega−6:omega−3, according to some authors, range from 1:1 to 1:4 (an individual needs more omega−3 than omega−6). Other authors believe that ratio 4:1 (when the amount of omega-6 is only 4 times greater than that of omega-3) is already healthy."

This table lists several different names for the most common omega−3 fatty acids found in nature.  This is not a complete list; missing are co-factor nutrients:

Common name Lipid name Chemical name
Hexadecatrienoic acid (HTA) 16:3 (n−3) all-cis-7,10,13-hexadecatrienoic acid
α-Linolenic acid (ALA) 18:3 (n−3) all-cis-9,12,15-octadecatrienoic acid
Stearidonic acid (SDA) 18:4 (n−3) all-cis-6,9,12,15-octadecatetraenoic acid
Eicosatrienoic acid (ETE) 20:3 (n−3) all-cis-11,14,17-eicosatrienoic acid
Eicosatetraenoic acid (ETA) 20:4 (n−3) all-cis-8,11,14,17-eicosatetraenoic acid
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) 20:5 (n−3) all-cis-5,8,11,14,17-eicosapentaenoic acid
Heneicosapentaenoic acid (HPA) 21:5 (n−3) all-cis-6,9,12,15,18-heneicosapentaenoic acid
Docosapentaenoic acid (DPA),
Clupanodonic acid
22:5 (n−3) all-cis-7,10,13,16,19-docosapentaenoic acid
Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) 22:6 (n−3) all-cis-4,7,10,13,16,19-docosahexaenoic acid
Tetracosapentaenoic acid 24:5 (n−3) all-cis-9,12,15,18,21-tetracosapentaenoic acid
Tetracosahexaenoic acid (Nisinic acid) 24:6 (n−3) all-cis-6,9,12,15,18,21-tetracosahexaenoic acid

Wikipedia, "Ratio of fatty acids in different foods."   Wiki: Ratio of omega fatty acids

Wong Cathy, "Krill Oil-Health Benefits, Uses, Side Effects & More," Alternative Medicine, July 22, 2013.  Wong: Krill oil benefits 2013