If you’re trying to improve your health and make some changes to your diet, then you’re probably looking at both multivitamins and fish oil supplements. These are the two most commonly used nutritional supplements. If someone is about to start taking their first ever dietary supplement, you can bet your money that it’s either a fish oil product or a multivitamin.
But do you really need to be taking both a fish oil supplement and a multivitamin at the same time?
Which is more important for overall health and performance?
Is it safe to take them both together every day?
Let’s find out!
Benefits of fish oil
Fish oil, or rather the omega 3 fatty acids that it contains, are known to be widely beneficial for health and performance.
Omega 3 fatty acids – ALA, EPA and DHA – have a diverse array of functions in the body. Consuming extra omega 3 fatty acids has been shown to improve health in a number of ways, from reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke to protecting cognitive performance as you get older.
Omega 3 consumption can also protect the joints by acting as a systemic anti-inflammatory. It is for this reason that omega-3 fatty acids are said to be generally good for overall health and longevity.
Many diseases are now thought to be linked to chronic, systemic inflammation. Fats much prevalent in the modern human diet – omega 6s and omega 9s – are pro-inflammatory. So consuming more omega 3 fatty acids is a good way to reduce inflammation and promote overall good health.
Benefits of multivitamins
Multivitamins can often be a waste of money, but they can also form the foundation of your diet and enhance every aspect of your health and performance.
Vitamin and mineral deficiencies are extremely common these days. Diets are generally quite poor, and most people are deficient in one nutrient or another (normally the vitamins and minerals found in nuts, seafood, and fruit).
Vitamin and mineral deficiencies are not a joke. They can cripple your health and your performance in ways you’ve never thought of before.
Being low in zinc can deplete your testosterone levels. Being low in Vitamin D can impair your immune system function. Having sub-optimal levels of Vitamin A can negatively impact your eyesight, your skin, and your bones.
Risks of combining fish oil with multivitamins
Fish oil supplements and multivitamins are both excellent for promoting overall good health and performance. However, you do not necessarily need to be taking both fish oil supplements and multivitamins at the same time.
In fact, there’s good reasons to avoid taking both of these supplements at the same time, depending on the exact supplements being used.
Most fish oils – particularly cod liver oils – do not just contains EPA and DHA. They also contain large quantities of Vitamin A and Vitamin E. In the case of Vitamin E, this isn’t a serious problem. Large quantities of Vitamin E are not thought to be dangerous. But Vitamin A can be toxic when consumed in large enough quantities. Doubling up on Vitamin A every day by taking both a multivitamin and a fish oil supplement can cause problems…serious problems.
However, using a pure DHA/EPA supplement will get you around this potential problem. If your fish oil supplement is not high in Vitamin A, then there’s really no problem with combining a multivitamin and a fish oil supplement.
Both multivitamins and fish oil supplements are beneficial for overall health and performance. Combining them will provide you with the ideal foundation for your diet or further supplement regimen. However, there are risks when combining a multivitamin with a Vitamin A-rich cod liver oil supplement. That’s why using a pure DHA/EPA supplement is ideal.