New Study Shows Omega-3 Forms Similar in Bioavailability

By Mark Lange, PhD

Omega-3 supplements are sold in three forms – triglyceride, ethyl ester and free fatty acid.  Two studies from the University of Southampton reports no significant differences between the three forms over 12 weeks of supplementation.  In healthy individuals, the delivery form of the supplement containing EPA and DHA had little influence on their bioavailability.  One explanation is that over longer periods of supplementation, any small differences in bioavailability between the forms is lost as the fatty acid concentration builds in the blood stream and tissues.  The authors state that, based upon these results, the choice of the lipid structure of the EPA and DHA should not a primary consideration in healthy adults trying to improve their EPA and DHA status.



Source:  West, A.L. et al. British Journal of Medicine.  doi:  10.1017/S0007114516002713