Cod liver oil is known for its omega 3 fatty acids and high amounts of vitamin D and vitamin A. It was already used in 1789 as a medicine to cure rheumatism. Eventually, in 1824, it was used as a treatment for rickets.
What you should know about this kind of oil is it only comes from the livers of cod, hence the name. Also, it has more omega 3 fatty acids than vitamins A and D, unlike other fish oils. Learn more about this oil below.
Cod Liver Oil Nutritional Profile
- Cholesterol: 26 milligrams (mg)
- Energy: 41 calories
- Polyunsaturated fatty acids: 1.014 g
- Vitamin A: 4,500 international units (IU)
- Monounsaturated fatty acids: 2.102 g
- Vitamin D: 450 IU
- Saturated fatty acids: 1.017 g
Benefits of Cod Liver Oil
Since cod liver oil contains a lot of nutrients, it is no surprise that it can give you a lot of health benefits as well. Some of these are the following:
1. Treatment for arthritis
According to studies, the oil can be a good cure for arthritis. This is because the nutrients found in the oil can reduce inflammation.
2. Has the right kind of fat for you
The fat found in this oil, omega 3 fatty acid, can give you a lot of benefits such as boosting your immune system, promoting your skin health, and increasing vitamins. Also, the fat brought by this oil can help you slow down the breakdown of carbohydrates, making your blood sugar level stable.
3. Treats wounds
A study shows that oil can be a great way to treat wounds. Researchers of that study said that it can treat ear wounds too. One possible reason for this is that cod liver oil contains vitamin A.
4. Prevent age-related degeneration
There are even studies that claim that omega 3 can give you better eye health and help you prevent age-related degeneration. This is because the oil has docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) that can delay your development of macular degeneration.
5. Improve your cognitive performance
Cod liver oil contains vitamin D. With this, you can expect that the oil can help you maintain your brain function even if you are old. Also, a different study claims that oil can prevent other cognitive impairment.
6. Prevent having coronary heart disease
Doctors might recommend you to have an intake of cod liver oil regularly to prevent getting coronary heart disease. This is because the fatty acids found in the oil can act as potent antioxidants. It can also protect you from arteriosclerosis and blood clots.
7. Give you anti-inflammation protectors
Research in 2017 has proven that omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties. Considering this and the fact that the oil does have omega-3 fatty acids, then you must expect that taking cod liver oil can give you anti-inflammatory bodies as well to protect your body. Even better, some of the oil’s users claim that the effect can be somewhat similar to that of marijuana.
8. Heal ulcer and stomach aches
An ulcer can give you nausea and stomach discomfort. As mentioned, these can be treated by the oil. But for this to work, you need to take a high level of the oil. To be sure how much oil you can have, consult with your doctor first.
These are just some of the many health benefits of cod liver oil. It can even protect you from tuberculosis. What is even great about this oil is that it can be a rich source of vitamin D. Although it is true that you can easily get vitamin D from the sun, you cannot get all the nutrients it has. So one way to get additional vitamin D into your system is through this oil.
Other Uses of Cod Liver Oil
Apart from its health benefits, there are other uses of this oil. Some of these are the following:
- Lowering your blood fats or triglycerides. It has been said that taking cod liver oil, it can reduce your blood fats to 20% to 50%.
- Prevent high blood pressure.
- Cure those who have type 2 diabetes.
- Heart disease
- Irregular heartbeat especially those with heart problems
- Ear infection
Side Effects of Cod Liver Oil
Of course, in everything that you eat and drink, there can be a side effect. That is the same with cod liver oil. Here are some of the possible side effects of this oil:
- Bad breath
- Loose stools
- Increase the chance of bleeding
Other than these side effects, there are also precautions that you need to remember to avoid complications:
- Diabetes – Some studies show that there is a tendency for your blood sugar to increase when you take cod liver oil. Meanwhile, there are other studies that claim that the oil can lower your blood pressure which is why it is not advisable to mix with medications that are mainly created to lower your blood pressure.
- Breastfeeding and pregnancy – pregnant women or mothers are not advised to take the oil as it gives you a high level of vitamin A and D.
Another way to prevent getting the side effects of cod liver oil is by knowing its right dosage.
Based on research, here are the suggested amount of oil that you need to take:
- To lower your high blood pressure, take 20 mL of the oil per day
- To lower triglycerides, take 20 mL of the oil per day
- To lower your cholesterol levels, take 30 mL of the oil per day
Overall, cod liver oil is one of the nutritious fish oil supplement. It gives you a lot of nutrients including vitamin D and A. Even better, it can give you a lot of health benefits such as anti-inflammation bodies, improve your cognitive performance, and even treat wounds.
But you must also know that there are disadvantages that come with it. You can get complications such as nausea and heartburn. Which is why it is very important that you know the precautions and the right dosage.