The Battle of the Sea

Krill Oil Vs. Fish Oil

A common question popping up in the world of nutrition is, “Which is better? Fish Oil or Krill Oil?” Instead of saying one or the other, let's dive into their similarities and differences to determine which is better for your health.

What is Fish Oil?

Derived from fatty fish like anchovies, mackerel, and salmon, Fish Oil’s primary benefits come from two types of omega-3 fatty acids – eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These fatty acids come in the form of triglycerides. Both have been shown to improve heart and brain health, among other benefits. In appearance, Fish Oil is typically a shade of yellow.

What Is Krill Oil

Unlike Fish Oil, Krill Oil is derived from tiny crustaceans called Antarctic Krill. It, too, is rich in EPA and DHA but is found in the form of phospholipids as opposed to Fish Oil’s form of triglycerides. In appearance, Krill Oil is a reddish color due to a naturally occurring antioxidant called astaxanthin.

Absorption & Effectiveness

Some studies suggest that Krill Oil may be absorbed better than fish oil due to their chemical makeup (Phospholipids vs. Triglycerides). However, further research is needed before any definitive conclusions can be made.
One thing is certain: Krill Oil contains more antioxidants than Fish Oil. Antioxidants protect the body from oxidative stress, a type of cell damage caused by molecules called free radicals. Studies have indicated that Krill Oil may improve heart health more than Fish Oil. It was found that Krill Oil was more effective at lowering several risk factors for heart disease: blood sugar, triglycerides, and “bad” LDL cholesterol.

So, Why Isn’t Everybody Buying Krill Oil?

PRICE. Both are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids and have significant health benefits which are backed by quality research. For most, Fish Oil is the reasonable choice if you are looking for a quality source of omega-3s at a low price. However, if you can spend the extra money, you may want to consider Krill Oil for its potentially greater health benefits.


Fish and Krill Oil may affect blood clotting, so if you are currently taking blood-thinning medications or have a blood disorder, talk to your healthcare provider before taking either of these supplements. Also, make sure to talk to your health care provider if you have any history of fish or shellfish allergies.

Kinétique serves clients physically in Midlothian, VA, and virtually throughout the USA. Connect with us (link to: Connect page) for more information regarding our fitness, nutrition, and health services.

Source - Written by Keith Pearson, PhD, RD on January 9, 2018

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