9 Science-Backed Health Benefits of Krill Oil

Medically Reviewed on 7/20/2022
9 health benefits of krill oil
Besides certain side effects, krill oil may offer the following nine science-backed health benefits.

Krill is a tiny marine animal about one-fourth to two inches in size. These crustaceans live in oceans and seas and serve as food for various animals including whales and penguins. They have emerged as beneficial food nutrient sources for humans.

Krill oil is particularly rich in omega-3 fatty acids that play several health benefits. Unlike fish oil capsules, krill oil capsule is less likely to cause unpleasant symptoms such as burping and unpleasant breath.

What are the dangers and side effects of krill oil?

Although krill oil is beneficial and safe when used in limited doses for short periods, you must take a nod from your doctor if you have any health concerns. Most side effects are mild and may include:

Pregnant and breastfeeding women must avoid these supplements unless their doctor asks them otherwise. 

Krill oil may not be safe for people with seafood allergies or those taking medications such as anti-diabetes drugs or blood thinners. It must be avoided before surgery because it can increase the risk of excessive bleeding. A weight loss medication called orlistat may reduce the absorption of krill oil from the gut.

9 health benefits of krill oil

Nine science-backed health benefits of krill oil include:

  1. Rich source of healthy fats: Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of polyunsaturated fats that are good for your health. Krill oil is particularly known for its high docosahexanoic acid and ecosapentanoic acid content. Both these omega-3 fatty acids are essential for overall health including the heart, brain, muscle, and nerve health. Studies report that omega-3 fatty acids in krill oil are better absorbed by the gut than those found in fish oil.
  2. Helps lower inflammation: Inflammation is your body’s response to ward off harmful substances such as bacteria, viruses, and toxins from the body. Excessive or uncontrolled inflammation, however, can lead to several diseases including heart diseases, metabolic disorders, and cancer. Krill oil contains anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds including astaxanthin (especially good for the eyes) and omega-3 fatty acids that protect your body against oxidative damage and inflammation.
  3. Good for the cardiovascular system: The cardiovascular system consists of the heart and blood vessels. Krill oil benefits the cardiovascular system in many ways. As per research, it lowers the levels of harmful triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and increases the levels of beneficial high-density lipoprotein (good) cholesterol. It protects the lining of the blood vessels from damage and thus helps regulate blood pressure levels.
  4. Improves brain health: Studies report that krill oil improves your mental health and protects your nerves and brain. Due to its beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system, it can lower stroke risk. It may provide protection against Alzheimer’s disease, other types of dementia, anxiety, and depression.
  5. May help manages premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms: PMS may cause undesirable symptoms such as bloating, cramps, mood changes, headache, and fluid retention. Research suggests that krill oil supplements may ease these symptoms. 
  6. May help with arthritis pain: Studies report the beneficial role of krill oil in osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Its anti-inflammatory effects help reduce symptoms such as joint pain, swelling, and stiffness associated with arthritis.
  7. Improves gut health: Krill oil is great for your gut. It acts as a prebiotic, which means it enhances the growth of good bacteria in the gut that contribute to digestion and gut immunity. Research suggests that krill oil helps keep the gut lining healthy and prevents gut infection.
  8. May help regulate blood sugar levels: Krill oil may play a role in lowering insulin resistance. This means it makes the body more responsive to the effects of the insulin hormone. This can help manage blood sugar levels and lower the risk of diseases such as diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
  9. May lower the risk of cancer: Krill oil has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. These two properties protect the DNA from damage. Mutations or damage to the DNA is the root cause of uncontrolled cell division leading to cancer. Studies have reported a protective role of krill oil against colon cancer.


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Medically Reviewed on 7/20/2022
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