Like CLA, fish fat (EPA, DHA) is one awesome PUFA or polyunsaturated fat. In fact, a recent study proves that fish oil helps you lose fat!
We know from other studies that the substitution of fish oil for other fats in a control diet (52 percent carbohydrates, 16 percent protein, 32 percent fat) influences body fat mass and substrate oxidation (i.e., what fuel you burn) in healthy adults. In this study, six volunteers were fed a control diet (C) for three weeks and 10-12 weeks later, the same diet where 6 grams per day of visible fat was replaced by 6 grams per day of fish oil for another three weeks. And some really great things happened. Even though caloric intake didn’t change, researchers discovered that body fat, as measured by the highly accurate DEXA (dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry), decreased with fish oil. Thus, dietary fish oil reduces body fat mass and stimulates fat burning in healthy adults.
But that’s not all. Scientists studied the individual and combined effects of omega-3 fatty acid supplements (i.e., fish oil) and regular exercise on body composition and cardiovascular health.They took over-weight volunteers with high blood pressure, cholesterol or triacylglycerols and randomly assigned them to one of the following groups: fish oil (FO) only, FO and exercise (FOX), sunflower oil (SO; control) and SO and exercise (SOX). The study volunteers consumed 6 grams tuna FO per day (which equates to about 1.9 grams omega-3 fatty acids) or 6 grams SO per day. The exercise groups walked three days a week for 45 minutes at 75 percent age-predicted maximal heart rate.
The authors of the study concluded, “FO supplements and regular exercise both reduce body fat and improve cardiovascular and metabolic health”
I’ll be honest. I think fatty fish is perhaps the single-best food you can eat. And if you don’t eat fish, fish oil supplementation is something everyone must do. The benefits are too great to ignore!