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Cod Liver Oil - frequently asked questions

Here are some common questions answered about Seven Seas Cod Liver Oil.

Question 1. I have been taking Seven Seas Pure Cod Liver Oil and I have heard that it helps to maintain supple joints. Is this because it is oiling my joints?

I have been taking Seven Seas Pure Cod Liver Oil and I have heard that it helps to maintain supple joints. Is this because it is oiling my joints? It was originally thought that Cod Liver Oil did actually act as a lubricant. However, clinical trials have discovered that it is the Omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids EPA & DHA in Cod Liver Oil - the same ones that help maintain heart health - that help joints stay healthy.

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Question 2. What is the difference between High Strength & Extra High Strength Cod Liver Oil?

As no two people are the same Seven Seas has developed a range of products to meet individual healthcare needs. We offer a choice of Omega-3 levels as well as a choice of capsule or liquid formats.

For example, a High Strength capsule supplying 200mg Omega-3 would be a good choice for someone looking to ensure a healthy Omega-3 intake or help maintain supple and flexible joints.

An Extra High Strength capsule that provides 400mg of Omega-3 might better suit an older person who wants higher strength help to maintain supple and flexible joints.

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Question 3. Why are Seven Seas Cod Liver Oil products more expensive than private label products?

Seven Seas uses the highest quality oils and ingredients available that are then refined using unique patented techniques that guarantee Seven Seas’ quality and purity. All Seven Seas products are researched and manufactured employing nutritionists, pharmacists and skilled technicians to produce products of the highest standards.

We invest in scientific research and education programmes so our customers can be sure that they have products of unsurpassed quality, they have an unrivalled scientific pedigree. Also, because it has the highest ethical standards with regard to conserving the environment and the future of world fish stocks, Seven Seas cannot search the markets for the cheapest fish.

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Question 4. I would like to increase my Omega-3 intake, but I have read that taking too much Cod Liver Oil carries a risk of overdosing on Vitamin A – is there a cod liver oil which doesn’t contain Vitamin A?

At Seven Seas we aim to continually improve our products to ensure that they meet the needs of our customers and many have expressed the wish to take their daily dose of Cod Liver Oil alongside other vitamin A containing supplements such as a multivitamin. We have consequently taken the decision to reduce the level of vitamin A in our High Strength and Extra High Strength Cod Liver Oil products, which in all other respects will remain the same.

To make sure our customers continue to have a choice from Seven Seas our One-A-Day and Traditional liquids and capsules products will remain in their original form. Please see ‘Products’ for full nutritional listings.

Anyone wishing to increase their intake of the Omega-3 fatty acids should look to a product in the Seven Seas High Strength or Extra High Strength Cod Liver Oil ranges. Seven Seas achieves higher levels of Omega-3 in these products by the unique Seven Seas Pureblend™ process which uses Triomega® Fish Oils, a concentrated form of Omega-3. Every capsule and every spoonful of Seven Seas High Strength and Extra High Strength Cod Liver Oil is Triomega® enriched to provide more Omega-3 in every dose.

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Question 5. Is Cod Liver Oil safe to take in pregnancy?

Although any reputable Cod Liver Oil product is unlikely to put a pregnant woman or her baby at risk if taken as directed, there is a theoretical risk of Vitamin A overdose if the woman’s diet contains other foods with a high Vitamin A content. We therefore do not recommend Seven Seas Cod Liver Oil in pregnancy. Pregnant women should always consult their doctor before taking any health or diet supplement.

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Question 6. Does Cod Liver Oil raise cholesterol?

The average amount of dietary cholesterol is not linked to levels of cholesterol in the blood. Blood cholesterol is more closely related to the amount of saturated fat in the diet - saturated fat raises blood cholesterol. The polyunsaturated fats, like those found naturally in Cod Liver Oil, have typically not been shown to raise blood cholesterol. However these long chain omega 3 polyunsaturates (EPA & DHA), which are found in these oils, do not usually reduce total cholesterol levels, specifically LDL (bad) cholesterol. On the other hand scientific research has shown that long chain omega 3 polyunsaturates (EPA & DHA) can help increase HDL “good” cholesterol levels in moderate amounts.

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Question 7. Can Cod Liver Oil be taken by people on anticoagulant therapy – such as Warfarin?

Research has shown that consumption of large quantities of Omega-3 EPA and DHA can increase bleeding time. This means that caution should be exercised by people being treated with anticoagulant drugs or other drugs which have the potential to reduce the clotting ability of blood. We advise anyone who is being treated by their GP for any illness or condition to advise him or her before taking food supplements.

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Question 8. There are so many foods available now that have been enriched or fortified with Omega-3s. Are these a good way to increase Omega-3 intake?

The evidence demonstrating the enormous health value of Omega-3 coupled with the knowledge that the typical western diet is woefully deficient in these nutrients has led to a rush of new product introductions. These days you can find Omega-3 in eggs, yoghurts, milks, spreads, bread, fruit juices and more.

However, many of these Omega-3s are of the short-chain type that the body finds difficult to convert into a useful form and are often at low levels. Check the amount of Omega-3 supplied by each product, check the price, then make your decision. We think you will find it easier to take one Cod Liver Oil capsule a day then eat a healthy variety of the foods you enjoy.

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Question 9. I am a vegetarian and therefore cannot take Cod Liver Oil. Is there a vegetarian option?

The type of Omega-3 obtained from vegetable sources is Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA). In theory, the body should be able to convert this into EPA and DHA, but the process is so unreliable that scientists invariably work with Omega-3 EPA and DHA. However, if you take a daily flaxseed (linseed) oil supplement and eat dark green leafy vegetables (walnuts too), you will be getting good levels of ALA. To help its conversion to EPA and DHA, cut down as much as possible on foods high in Omega-6 fatty acids. These include vegetable oils and spreads and many processed foods.

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Question 10. I am worried about reports that oily fish contain high levels of toxic dioxins and PCBs. Is Cod Liver Oil safer to take or is it just as bad?

It is true that some oily fish – particularly the bigger fish - are contaminated by environmental toxins. However, you may be reassured that Seven Seas Cod Liver Oil is taken from fish caught in the cold, clear, clean waters of the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans before undergoing a sophisticated and stringent refining process to produce oil to the Ocean Gold standard of purity. Then, every single drop of Seven Seas Pure Cod Liver Oil is checked in twenty different ways to guarantee our high quality.

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