Opinion

What’s going on with fish oil burps? | Lanning

You don’t like to take fish oil because you get those nasty fish oil burps. So to combat that, someone recommended you take “enteric coated” fish oil capsules.

No more fishy burps, right? Well, maybe. But guess what else there is “no more” of? Absorption of nutrients! That’s right. Enteric coated fish oil capsules provide zero nutritional value to your body.

Here’s how it works. You take the enteric coated fish oil capsules, and because of the coating, they don’t break down in the stomach, but move right on through to the far end of the small intestine where they finally break apart and continue through you. So no icky fish oil coming from your tummy. Well, by bypassing your stomach, you have kept many of the digestive triggers shut down. Your body doesn’t know there is something there with nutrients it needs to absorb.

Fish oil is a fat, obviously. Fat requires a particular set of digestive triggers in order to be assimilated. When fat is in the stomach, fat digesting enzymes are triggered. As the fat moves from the stomach through to the small intestine it triggers bile from the gall bladder and more fat digesting enzymes from the pancreas. Fat itself must be present to trigger the fat digesting enzymes. No fat, no trigger and no absorption. If you have coated the fat with a man-made coating, it becomes invisible to the body and just passes through without triggering digestion. It might, however, provide you with gas and loose stools. Way better than fish oil burps, right?

So that results in no absorption of the nutrients, which is the reason for taking the fish oil in the first place.

So, why do you get fish oil burps? Because it is not being properly emulsified in your stomach and it is becoming rancid. And yes, it can become rancid in a very short time. What causes rancidity to take place? A low-fat/no-fat diet.

Once again, it is the lack of fats in your system to trigger the release of bile and fat digesting enzymes to emulsify the fish oil. Simply coating the capsules does absolutely nothing to help you. But eating a diet rich in natural fats will absolutely help you, in many ways.

Oh, and one last thing, enteric coatings can be made of waxes, shellacs, and plastics. Yuck. Instead of trying to muscle down giant, plastic coated, fish oil capsules, just try flavored liquid fish oil. It goes down easy, doesn’t taste bad, won’t give you burps and will more quickly trigger those fat digesting enzymes so you can more quickly get the benefits of those Omega 3s.

Cassandra Lanning is the owner of Integrity Skin Care www.integrityskincare.com.

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