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Omega 3 Benefits for Men: Everything You Should Know

Published by Dr. Venn-Watson
Dr. Eric Venn-Watson’s Highlights

It happens to every guy; at some point, you feel like you’re losing your competitive edge. Whether you’re finding it harder to keep up with your kids during a game of basketball or simply finding yourself slower with decision-making, discovering that you are, in fact, aging can be a sobering realization.

Once you recognize the signs of aging, like most of us, you probably start looking for ways to turn back the hands of time or at least slow them down a little. Diet and exercise are easy boxes to check, and taking a dietary supplement seems like a natural progression into better health, but which one should you take? Men’s health supplements are an increasingly popular market, but many of these supplements contain ingredients that aren’t as bioavailable for the body as others. 

Omega-3 is famous for being the “healthy” fat, so let’s explore if taking a fish oil supplement that contains certain types of omega-3 is a good option for guys who want to support their overall health and have a little more control over their aging. 

(Spoiler: there’s a better fatty acid out there to support healthy aging.)

What Is Omega-3?

Omega-3 is a polyunsaturated fatty acid that was discovered over 90 years ago by a husband and wife team of scientists. This team discovered that many of the processes in our bodies require omega-3 fatty acids to work, but our bodies can’t make them on their own. This makes them essential. 

For a vitamin or nutrient to be essential, our body must have it but is not able to make it, so we need to obtain it from the foods we eat or through supplements. 

Omega-3 is found in large amounts in fatty fish like sardines, anchovies, salmon, mackerel, and herring. In addition to oily fish, it’s also found in certain nuts and seeds, like chia seeds, in soybeans, and in plant oils like flaxseed oil and canola oil. 

Even if you don’t think you consume a lot of these foods, you’re probably still getting plenty of omega-3 in your diet. A simple blood test can reveal how much omega-3 you have circulating in your body. If you’re already getting your daily recommended amount of omega-3s, there’s little reason to supplement. 

What Does Omega-3 Do for Your Body?

Omega-3s have a lot of science behind them, showing multiple benefits, like reducing triglycerides and decreasing your risk of heart disease, but there is also an Achilles heel. The studies that show improvements in triglyceride levels and heart health benefits were done using foods high in omega-3 or pure omega-3 (pure EPA) pharmaceuticals. Studies done using fish oil supplements have not shown the same benefit. The poor results of fish oil supplements may be due to them being well, fish oil, which is prone to oxidation and going rancid, especially in lower quality, less pure supplements. 

Let’s look into more detail about what foods high in omega-3 and pure omega-3 pharmaceuticals can do for our health:

Support Heart Health

You know it as the heart-healthy fat, and to some degree, this is true. Omega-3 fatty acids do support heart health when combined with a healthy lifestyle. 

Omega-3 helps regulate the amount of triglycerides circulating in your blood. These triglycerides are needed by your body, but too many triglycerides can lead to high cholesterol, plaque build-up in your arteries, and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Omega-3 helps support healthy triglyceride levels, but taking too much omega-3 can actually be detrimental to your health because fish oil supplements often contain high doses of other ingredients, too, like vitamin A. 

In other words, if you’re getting enough omega-3 from your diet, you may not need to take an additional omega-3 supplement.

Eye Health

There are numerous studies that support omega-3’s ability to bolster your eye health. One of the most promising effects of taking an omega-3 supplement is the reduction of dry eye in patients. Taking omega-3 helps the structures in your eye maintain their integrity and helps support overall eye health. 

Whether or not omega-3 plays a hand in helping reduce your risk of developing age-related eye diseases, like macular degeneration, remains to be seen. Pun intended.

Mental Health

Focusing on brain health, we can look at the cumulative data available that links omega-3 with changes in brain function. In recent years, research has begun to determine what, if any, effect omega-3 has on patients suffering from depression and cognitive disorders like Alzheimer's disease. 

Of the people who have been studied, those with lower circulating levels of omega-3 fatty acids tend to be the patients who suffer most frequently from depression. The link between cognitive decline and depression is quantifiable, which may mean that people suffering from depression need to be more aware of their intake of omega-3 fats.

As such, increasing your intake of omega-3s or taking a pure omega-3 prescribed by your doctor may support a more balanced mood and even improve cognitive function. 

Omega-3 Benefits for Men

While men can certainly benefit from the heart, eye, and mood support offered by omega-3, there are other ways this fatty acid may benefit men directly. 

In animal studies, omega-3 had a significant effect on erectile dysfunction that was caused by atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is a condition in which the blood vessels and arteries become hardened with plaque, leading to a decline in cardiovascular health. For men, this can cause erectile dysfunction. 

Because omega-3 supports healthy triglyceride levels, researchers began studying whether or not taking omega-3 could help patients whose erectile dysfunction was caused by arterial hardening. It turns out omega-3 was beneficial in helping reduce erectile dysfunction that was a result of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries. 

It’s worth noting these studies were only performed in animals, so one should be careful concluding that omega-3s will have the same effect in humans.

Additional studies (involving human males) showed that taking omega-3 helped support testicular function. This is likely because of the involvement of omega-3 with certain reproductive cells in a man’s body. 

Risks of Taking Omega-3 for Men

The omega-3 fatty acid supplements you find on your store shelf have a few concerning findings that you should know about. In addition to their risk of oxidation and rancidity, omega-3 fish oil supplements contain many types of fatty acids. Of those, only one type of omega-3 is actually considered essential. 

Alpha-linolenic acid, or ALA, is essential, while both docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) are not. However, the heart health benefits associated with omega-3 are largely focused on the purest and most viable form of omega-3, which is pure EPA available by prescription only and explicitly without DHA.

Further, to get an appropriate dose of omega-3 in fish oil supplements, you’ll need to take a lot of omega-3 each day. On average, dosing ranges from 2000-3000 milligrams per day, and higher doses of omega-3 fish oil supplements may increase your risk of bleeding and other complications

You’ll also be subjected to the signature fish-burp aftertaste that is impossible to escape. Because omega-3 supplements contain fish oil, there’s almost always a really unpleasant aftertaste, even in “burpless” formulas. 

Fish oil isn’t the only ingredient you’ll find in a fish oil supplement, either. Checking the labels of your supplements is important because many include surprising ingredients to help preserve the tablets or make them more shelf-stable. 

Speaking of shelf-stable, your favorite source of omega-3 could be more than a little fishy. Independent researchers tested more than 60 brands of fish oil supplements they found available for retail sale, and at least one in 10 of them were oxidized and already rancid before they were even purchased. If these supplements are rancid on the shelf, they will be rancid in your body. 

Lastly, a few studies have indicated that taking high doses of omega-3 could be associated with an increased risk of developing prostate cancer. Research is still ongoing, but it’s something to keep on your radar when deciding whether or not taking an omega-3 is right for you. 

Want to improve your health without the risk (or fishy taste)? Pentadecanoic acid can help. 

A Better Fatty Acid

Pentadecanoic acid, also known as C15:0, was discovered as a beneficial fatty acid by a veterinary epidemiologist who was studying how to continually improve the health and welfare of older dolphins. It is a TED talk worth watching.

This epidemiologist found that some older dolphins, but not all, developed aging-associated conditions. 

One of the key differences? The healthier, older dolphins had more C15:0 in their diet.

Once they’d made the connection, research began on whether or not C15:0 would have the same effect on humans. A growing body of evidence now supports that C15:0 benefits human health, too.† 

Elevate your cells. Elevate your self.

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How C15:0 Works

C15:0 works by diving deep into your cells, supporting them and helping them age more healthfully.* As we get older, a few things happen to our cells that cause them to decline: the cell membranes that protect them become more fragile as we age, and the batteries of our cells, our mitochondria, begin to lose function. 

C15:0 is like life support for struggling cells, and it helps by:*

  • Strengthening cell membranes. C15:0 is a sturdy fatty acid that is capable of integrating into cell walls, fortifying them and helping them remain strong and protected from external stressors.

  • Supporting mitochondrial function. Studies show that C15:0 can increase your mitochondrial function by 45%, helping your cells function more like they did when you were younger. That’s pretty big news for guys that feel like they’re slowing down. 

Clearing damaged cells. As we age, cells begin to lose their function, but instead of dying, they simply exist in our bodies and create inflammation. C15:0 activates a molecule known as AMPK, which effectively cleans house, removing “zombie” cells and decreasing levels of proinflammatory cytokines, which are known to be a key driver in the aging process. AMPK is also responsible for regulating glucose uptake and helping calm our immune systems. 

The big takeaway: C15:0 does a better job of supporting our cellular health than the purest and most effective form of omega-3. In fact, when C15:0 was compared to the purest, highest-performing omega-3 in a head-to-head battle that observed the effects of both acids on 12 different cell types, C15:0 was found to be broader, safer, and more effective.

C15:0 also supports other areas of your health. By binding with PPAR receptors located all over your body, C15:0 can help regulate and balance mood, weight, and even sleep.*

How To Get More C15:0

C15:0 is found in trace amounts in whole dairy products like full-fat butter and cheese. However, simply increasing our intake of full-fat dairy products would mean increasing our intake of sugars and other proinflammatory fatty acids. Thankfully, there’s a supplement that offers a good solution. 

Fatty15 is the first and only supplement to offer the pure, vegan-friendly version of C15:0, called FA15™. Fatty15 is easy to take, and unlike a fish oil supplement, is not prone to oxidation or rancidity and won’t leave you with a horrible aftertaste. In fact, it has no taste or smell making it a great supplement to add to your morning coffee or tea. 

Further, because fatty15 is a pure C15:0 supplement, you’ll only need one small pill of 100 milligrams per day to obtain the benefits.

Final Notes

Want a supplement that is 3X better than the purest, highest-performing omega-3? Try fatty15, the world's first and only science-backed, patented, award-winning C15:0 supplement that supports your long-term health & wellness.*Get started with your fatty15 30-day trial kit here


Omega 3 Fatty Acids-Health Professional|ODS.NIH.gov

A fish a day, keeps the cardiologist away! – A review of the effect of omega-3 fatty acids in the cardiovascular system|NCBI

Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Erectile Dysfunction in a Rat Model of Atherosclerosis-induced Chronic Pelvic Ischemia|NCBI

Association of Fish Oil Supplement Use With Testicular Function in Young Men|Jama Network

Plasma Phospholipid Fatty Acids and Prostate Cancer Risk in the SELECT Trial|Academic.OUP

Cognitive impairment in depression: recent advances and novel treatments - PMC

Revealed: many common omega-3 fish oil supplements are ‘rancid’|The Guardian.com

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Eric Venn-Watson M.D.

Eric is a physician, U.S. Navy veteran, and Co-founder and COO of Seraphina Therapeutics. Eric served over 25 years as a Navy and Marine Corps physician, working with the special forces community to improve their health and fitness. Seraphina Therapeutics is a health and wellness company dedicated to advancing global health through the discovery of essential fatty acids and micronutrient therapeutics.

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