There are dozens of reasons to take fish oil pills.
But you also hear of a couple of reasons why you shouldn’t.
Fish oil bleeding risk is one of those reasons.
So does fish oil increase bleeding risk?
This is not an old wives tale. Eskimos bleed more than the rest of us. And that’s because they eat an average of 13,700 mg of Omega-3 per day.
‘Is that a lot?’ you ask.
Yes, it’s a whole heckuva lot. 13,700 mg of Omega-3 is equivalent to 46 regular strength fish oil pills a day. Or 13 OmegaVia pills every day.
If you consume THAT MUCH Omega-3 every day for months, your risk for bleeding may increase. And you might also notice a slight increase in nose bleeds and a slight increase in the time it takes for blood to clot.
No one in America or anywhere else for that matter, eats 13,700 mg of Omega-3 per day.
So what about fish oil bleeding risk from everyday, regular fish oil dosage?
Research shows that fish oil bleeding risk not a concern.
This is not my opinion. See below.
Here are the facts and quotations from scientists and universities:
|My alma mater, Purdue University is home to the Omega-3 Learning Center.|
Researchers from the Division of Cardiology at Drexel University College of Medicine say that fish oil bleeding risk is not high even if it is combined with aspirin and Plavix, an anti-clotting drug used to prevent strokes.
“High-dose fish oil is safe in combination with aspirin and clopidogrel (Plavix) and does not increase the risk of bleeding.”
Source: Watson PD, Joy PS, Nkonde C, Hessen SE, Karalis DG. Comparison of bleeding complications with omega-3 fatty acids + aspirin + clopidogrel–versus–aspirin + clopidogrel in patients with cardiovascular disease. American Journal of Cardiology 2009 Oct 15;104(8):1052-4.
Johns Hopkins Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease published a paper in May 2010 that said “an increased risk of bleeding was not observed.”
Dr. Bill Harris from the Sanford School of Medicine at University of South Dakota says:
“Omega-3 fatty acid ethyl esters have well-known triglyceride-lowering properties and were shown over 30 years ago to inhibit platelet function.
With the recent US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of these agents for treating severe triglyceride elevations, concerns about excess bleeding naturally arise.
However, an objective assessment of the evidence for clinically significant bleeding reveals that such concerns are unfounded.
As such, the benefits of triglyceride lowering with omega-3 fatty acids more than outweigh any theoretical risks for increased bleeding.”
Louisville Metabolic and Atherosclerosis Research Center
“It has been suggested that the potential antithrombotic effect of fish oils may theoretically increase the risk for bleeding, which may be a safety concern for individual patients.
However, clinical trial evidence has not supported increased bleeding with omega-3 fatty acid intake, even when combined with other agents that might also increase bleeding (such as aspirin and warfarin).”
Source: Bays HE. Safety considerations with omega-3 fatty acid therapy. American Journal of Cardiology 2007 Mar 19;99(6A):35C-43C.
In 2004, the US Dept. of Health and Human Services Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (Whew! That’s a long name that only an agency of the government could have.) reviewed 148 different clinical studies with over 20,000 patients for signs of increased bleeding.
They found that 6.6% of people taking fish oil complained about stomach distress and other fish oil side effects, but they did not notice an increased fish oil bleeding risk.
So the Feds and the scientists agree that fish oil bleeding risk is very low.
To put my money where my mouth is, my wife took 4000 mg of Omega-3 every day during her pregnancy right up until and after C-section delivery.