What’s the best supplement? Proper nutrition. If you really dial it in, you don’t need any supplements. Paleo folk want to get it right, but grass-fed beasts are fucking expensive. I prefer to spend my disposable income on proven investments like scratch-off lottery tickets. Before someone posts to comments about frugal ways to purchase grass-fed/wild-caught: I’m well versed in the concepts of cow-pooling and buying a separate freezer for my garage. I make a respectable salary and as my Sperry Topsiders would indicate- I have a mortgage and own both of my vehicles.
Times are tough and this post is for folks who want to follow the rules of good nutrition and avoid the Paleo-induced ‘Catholic-guilt’ by missing the mark because they can’t afford to pay $10 per lb for Polyface ground beef. Specifically, I’m referring to the superior Omega-3 content of grass-fed meat and wild-caught fish as compared to grain-munching feedlot cattle and aquaculture fish. Look, folks- there is a bypass to getting your Omega 3’s without spending all your hard earned moneydollars on snob meat.
Let’s break down the importance of omega-3 fatty acids: While both Omega 3 (N-3) and Omega 6 (N-6) are essential to health, Robb Wolf recommends a ratio of 1:1 to 1:2 N-3 to N-6. By comparison, the typical western diet has a ratio of 1:10 to 1:30 N3 to N6. Basically, not enough Omega 3. We used to get the favorable ratio back in our spear-chucking days by chewing on wild beasts. These days, feedlot livestock stand teat-deep in their own shit and chew poopcorn. They have a higher N6 content and suck at life. You are what you eat.
To account for poor N3-N6 ratios in conventional meat and fish, getchoo some Omega 3 fish oil. I’m not getting any loot for advertising, but I’m a big fan of Carlson’s Very Finest. Other acceptable brands include: Nordic Naturals, Barleans and SFH. The key is to get a product that has a high EPA/DHA count (which means you’ll have lower doses). Cheap brands generally have a low EPA/DHA count which means the overall N-3 content is unfavorable. This renders the supplementation of fish oil almost useless. Additionally, make sure the product is Vitamin A/D free. You don’t need that. Do your research, read labels and pick for yourself.
As far as dosing, consult the almighty Robb Wolf Fish Oil Calculator. It’ll tell you, based upon bodyweight and EPA/DHA count (with a health-status factor), exactly how much you should be taking. For more information on fish oil check out the very helpful Whole 9 Fish Oil FAQ.
Tips for idiots: Don’t drink from the fucking bottle. I learned the hard way. After regularly drinking from the bottle, the once-clear oil developed an opaque, milky hue from my salivary bacteria which had run amuck. It took me a couple days to figure out it was my fish oil that was making me nauseous. I ended up having to throw out a half-used bottle. Don’t be like me: use a spoon as directed.