Krill is the generic name for the tiny shrimp-like crustaceans found in the cold waters of the Antarctic. They are essentially composed of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, such as EPA or DHA, the multi-potent benefits of which are constantly being demonstrated.
¤ Krill means ‘whale food’ in Norwegian, although they are also eaten by penguins, seals, seabirds and salmon.
¤ Antarctic krill oil, Euphasia superba, is extracted from frozen, crushed krill. The lipid extract is filtered to remove proteins and other components resulting in a perfectly pure oil, free from dioxins, heavy metals and PCBs. Our krill comes from Norway (AKER) and is guaranteed free from pollutant residues.
What is krill oil supplement composed of?
¤ Krill oil supplement essentially consists of the polyunsaturated fatty acids EPA and DHA. One gram of krill oil provides around 250mg of EPA + DHA, and thus helps meet international nutritional recommendations for these two long-chain fatty acids, of around 500mg/day.
¤ However, what distinguishes krill oil from fish oils is its high antioxidant and phospholipid content. These compounds increase the oil’s stability, maintain the integrity of the fragile fatty acids and improve their bioavailability. Indeed, phospholipids (there are at least 40% in krill oil) uniquely ensure the transport of fatty acids to their target destinations, the cell membranes, and offer essential protection for neuron cells.
¤ The ORAC value of krill oil is 378 units per gram, which is approximately the same as for kiwi fruit. The main antioxidant in krill oil is astaxanthin (0.8mg/g), a compound belonging to the carotenoid family. Astaxanthin is a key antioxidant for eye and skin health, both of which are exposed to the sun’s UV rays. It is also widely recommended for eye fatigue and AMD as it increases blood flow in the retina and protects the tissues of the lens from free radical damage.
Krill oil supplement with multiple benefits
For its effects on chronic inflammation
• Chronic inflammation is at the root of the so-called diseases of civilisation: cardiovascular disease, arthritis … A number of studies have shown that krill oil reduces inflammation in the heart and vascular system. The EFSA have even recognised it as a protective substance against cardiovascular disease in their evaluations of health claims. It appears to offer benefits following a heart attack or simply in reducing cardiovascular risk linked to chronic inflammation.
• Chronic inflammation also has a direct impact on the joints, particularly on arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. Research shows that taking krill oil for a month reduced by 30% levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a physiological marker for inflammatory processes. A few weeks’ supplementation with krill oil mitigates pain and stiffness in arthritic joints and thus reduces requirements for anti-inflammatories.
For combatting hypertriglyceridaemia and hypercholesterolaemia
• Research has shown that krill oil suppressed hepatic steatosis (fatty liver) in high-fat fed rats. In addition, other studies have shown that three months’ supplementation, at doses of 2g to 3g/day, significantly reduced LDL-cholesterol levels (by 18%) and blood triglycerides (by 27%). These results clearly demonstrate the benefits of krill oil in preventing body fat accumulation and in reducing the risk of relapse and mortality following a heart attack.
For relieving premenstrual syndrome
• In a trial involving 70 women in Quebec, researchers noted that daily use of krill oil, at doses of 2g/day, significantly improved symptoms of premenstrual syndrome as well as period pain (dysmenorrhea),
For its beneficial effects on emotional health
• Researchers have recommended krill oil for treating certain psychological disorders (depression, bipolar disorders…). Emotional health benefits are related to krill oil’s phospholipids which enable omega-3 to cross the central nervous system easily. However, the results of larger-scale studies are awaited to expand and confirm these findings.