Hi and welcome to my guide on Krill, from this guide you will be able to see what krill oil benefits are and what krill oil is used for.There are 86 species of Krill (Euphausiacea), but today we’ll be focusing on one of the species. The ‘Antarctic Krill’ (Euphausiacea superba), the most dominant of the species in the unpolluted waters surrounding Antarctica and where most krill oil comes from.
Although only around the size of your little finger Krill has one of the most potent digestive enzymes on the planet and compared to other multi-cellular animals, they are the most abundant species with a biomass of 500 million metric tonnes.
Krill are ‘glow in the dark’ bioluminescent due to chemical reactions involving oxygen molecules (stored in photocytes) and control the intensity of the light using muscle contractions and relaxation. It is believed they use the light to recognize each other from the same species to make forming with each other possible. Although it hasn’t been proven, it is suspected their bioluminescence helps ward off predators and involved in the mating process.
Krill Oil vs Fish Oil
Krill Oil is a completely natural source of the Omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic (EPA) and docosahexaenoic (DHA) also containing Astaxanthin and phospholidpids and this is what sets it apart from fish oil. Astaxanthin is a natually occurring antioxidant which gives the Krill oil its dark red colour and also
assists in keeping the omega-3 fatty acids stable, fish oil contains no Astaxanthin and their omega-3 fatty acids are stored in triglycerides.
There is increasingly more proof that the differences between the two forms of omega-3 and the way it is stored is important. phospholipids in Krill Oil, triglycerides and ethyl-esters in fish oil.
The phospholipids in Krill oil has shown to work better at getting a higher concentration of omega-3 fatty acids into human tissue in a more effective and efficient way meaning your can take a lower dose of krill oil compared to fish oil to get the same result, furthermore, there is evidence that pholipis (and choline) have in itself many health benefits.
All three of Krill Oils major components (phospholipids, omega-3 fatty acids, choline) have all shown to have health benefits and in also effect the body’s cells and tissues positively and cover a wide range of health conditions.
The Latest Krill Oil Studies
Because the omega-3 fatty acids mix into your immune cell membranes directly, reducing the amount of pro-inflammatory acid (arachidonic acid). They can enhance your immune function and especially help in situations where your immune system function is reduces or compromised. An example of this is after a heavy weight-lifting session or a physical sporting competition.
As we are all well aware, the immune system makes a change after extreme physical exercise. Making your body more vunerable or susceptible to infections for 1-9 hours after the physical activity. This is due to the decrease in the two molecules that have the ability to regulate the activity of immune cells, those being the interleukin (IL-2) and interferon gamma (IFN-y)
Fortunately for us, supplementing omega-3 increases both of these molecules and increasing natural killer (NK) cell function and therefore help to protect the host after exercise. Also, the presence of omega-3, which contains EPA and DHA have the function of reducing heart rate and oxygen consumption.
An example of Krill Oil used in sports was conducted by Dr Stuart Gray from the University of Aberdeen.
After a simulated cycling time trial with both male and female participants to determine krill oils potential to fortify the immune system after exercise.
The measurement of the omega-3 index, the percentage of EPA and DHA fatty acids found in red blood cells was measured after six weeks of either a placebo or two grams of krill oil daily.
The results proved that there was a significant increase to their omega-3 index from using krill oil and the krill oil EPA/DHA used, compared to fish oil EPA/DHA used in an earlier study, was only a quarter of the fish oil dose. With a possible reason, although not proven, is because the way omega-3 fatty acids are bound structurally different, omega-3 phospholipids in krill oil vs omega-3 triglycerides in fish oil.
Another study involving the Polish National Rowing team, showed after a 6 week study on krill oil supplementation showed the krill oil affected the levels of both pro- and anti-oxidant balance markers. The athletes that were on the placebo shared with the athletes that were taking 1 gram of krill oil a day, increased values of oxidative stress parameters, but the biggest, most significant difference being in their recovery. The rowers taking krill oil had less oxidative damage post-exercise to red blood cells while in recovery.
Is Krill Oil good for skin?
Short answer: Yes
Omega-3 fatty acids and phospholipds, both found in krill oil are great for skin and very important for healthy skin.
With healthy skin, water loss is controlled and limited to the correct amount. Atopic eczema, a damaged skin condition, its destinctive trait is water loss. In a 12-week study on krill oil it was proven that it helps alleviate dry skin and water loss.
The phopholipid effect on the skin helps increase hydration and decrease water loss and changing lipid levels in the skin and the omega-3 effect on the skin can help improve smootheness and elasticity, decrease water loss, increase hydration, help with inflammation and changing lipid levels in the skin.
Krill Oil can make positive changes to your skin parameters, it can influence elasticity, skin hydration and also the amount and size of wrinkles. This was proven in a study of 31 people, middle-aged men and women who were randomized to take 3 grams of krill oil daily for 13 weeks.
The Phospholid was first discovered in 1847 by French chemist Theodore Nicolas Gobley who was analyzing lecithin (a rich source of phosphatidylcholine( PC)) in egg yolk. phospholipids are often used in beauty products and paints and stabilizers and emulsifiers in foods in the form of lecithin. Lecithin had already made it into an Italian medicine dictionary in 1933 for conditions like depression, tuberculosis, diabetes and to help recover from infectious diseases.
The functions of the Phospholid molecule in the human body plays a significant part in your body’s health. It acts as a wetting agent that covers the surface of your kidney, lungs, liver, gastrointestinal tract cells and also provides choline to the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Which is imporatant for storing energy, helping with blood clotting, cholesterol solubility and antioxidant protection.
Purified forms of phospholipids can help treat many health conditions including arthritism heart disease, fatty liver, hypercholesterolemia and more.
Some of the Benefits of Phospholipid
Stress and depression – Helps reduce the production of stress hormones and instress related mood symptoms.
Stomach and gastrointestinal tract(GI) – Helps reduce stomach pain caused by gastric acid and also reduces typical side effects of analgesic GI medication.
Liver disease – Can help with hepatic conditions, reducing the damage caused by alcohol related and hepatic liver damage from virus infections and toxins.
Immune system – Improvement of immunological function
Infant development – Choline supplements improves life-long memory traits (animal studies) and improves brain development in fetuses.
Heart Disease– Phospholipid help with heart and cardiovascular diseases, reduction of cholesterol, reduction in hypertension, platelet aggregation decreased and a reduction in the risk of arteriosclerosis.
Physical Performance – Phospholid improves physical performance by stimulating acetycholine synthesis which releases neurotransmitters in the brain.
Ulcerative colitis – The intestinal lining of the gastrointestinal wall gains protection and healing effects from phospholipid.
What is Choline?
They are essential for normal cellular function, a vitamin-like nutrient. 90% of the U.S population does not consume enough Choline to ensure proper membrane function and neurotransmission. Being choline deficient will cause diseases and complications as many organs rely on choline for proper function. Examples include the brain, liver, pancreas, kidney and muscle.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Is omega-3 responsible for human evolution 2 million years ago? It is quite possible that when the Neanderthals, heavy red meat eaters started incorporating seafood in their diet which may have triggered growth in the brain.
Omega-3 is an essential fatty acid and are essential to human health. But unfortunately our bodies can not make them for themselves. DHA and EPA are the most well known types of omega-3 fatty acids and can usually be found in fish and other types of animal based food.
Some of the reasons why your need omega-3 in your diet are
Improves childrens learning ability – Helps with behavioral and mood problems and when a child has low DHA levels they are more inclined to have poor memory and reading skills.
Helps cholesterol levels – Reduces bad cholesterol levels and fats in the blood.
Helps with diabetes – Omega-3 can help even out low HDL levels and high triglyceride which is common in diabetes sufferers.
It also can assist in lowering apoproteins.
Helps reduce depression – Omega-3 fatty acid can act like antidepressants, there is a high concentration of omega-3 in the brain and it is really important for brain health. Some of the health benefits of omega-3, besides overall memory and brain performance are
cognitive function, alzheimers disease, emotional distress, A.D.H.D symptoms, mood, depression, self harm, suicidal thinking,
age-related cognitive decline.
Heart health – Omega-3 can if consuming the correct amount, can reduce fatty plaque development that is found inside artery walls and help lower blood pressure. Omega-3 also lowers triglycerdie, arteriosclerosis, cholesterol and positively raises your omega-3 index and HDL ( good cholesterol)
Skin Health – The secret to beautiful skin is what your eat – A healthy diet of omega-3 increases hydration and can reduce symptoms of eczema, acne and psoriasis and reducing aging, sunburn and cancer via photo-protective effects.
Cancer – Omega-3 is used to decrease the risk of developing cancer and can be used by cancer patients to prevent worsening. Omega-3 is mainly suited for gastrointestinal origin work and as an anti-inflammatory agent.
Just like with anything, take care when trying something new. Go to a doctor and ask for their advice and recommendations and get checked for allergies etc. In some cases Krill Oil or Fish Oil can cause allergic reactions and is just not compatible with some people. I am not a medical professional, I just have a strong interest in better health and living.
Also, if considering to buy krill oil or fish oil make sure they are in compliance with The Convention of the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) and the provider is ‘Friend of the Sea’ certified. I have provided a link if you’d like to check out Krill Oil Plus
Thank you for reading
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