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Fish Oil vs. Krill Oil: Which is The Right Omega-3 Oil for You?

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Beyond a shadow of a doubt, the most popular item in our collection is our Triple Strength Omega-3 Fish Oil. In fact, it's so popular that just keeping up with demand can be a challenge. Sales continue to exceed our expectations, and sometimes, we suddenly find that we're fresh out! As usual, we're working hard to replenish supplies as quickly as possible.

Our krill oil shines in many of the same ways that make our fish oil so desirable. And for many people, supplementing with krill oil can actually yield greater benefits. Unfortunately, since krill oils don't have the same "buzz" surrounding their use that fish oils do, many consumers are unaware of this. In this article, we're going to take a closer look at krill oils and see how they compare to fish oils in general.

Bioavailability & Potency

Krill oil's superiority over regular fish oil can be best understood in the context of the adage: “You are not what you eat. You are what you absorb.” The omega-3 fatty acids (EPA & DHA) in krill oil are naturally bound to phospholipids, which bind to cell membranes in the body and help transport the omega-3s into the cells where they are needed and can provide the most benefits. In other words, the omega-3s in krill oil are more bioavailable to the cells, being better absorbed. For this reason, even a little goes a long way. As a matter of fact, most research shows that krill oil is absorbed up to 50% better than fish oil1, so it takes fewer pills of krill oil to achieve the same desired benefits as fish oil.

Comparing NutriGold fish oil with NutriGold krill oil
Fishermen in Alaska fishing for pollock

As faithful users of our Double Strength and Triple Strength fish oils will point out, NutriGold’s fish oils are made using the better-absorbed triglyceride (rTG) form, the form in which omega-3s occur in nature. Indeed, the triglyceride form of fish oil is considered more bioavailable than conventional ethyl ester forms. Also, NutriGold's fish oils are highly concentrated for omega-3 content, providing 2,100 mg total omega-3 fatty acids in each serving of Triple Strength Omega-3 Fish Oil. This high concentration means fewer pills are needed to meet recommended dosages, offering at least three times as many omega-3s per serving as most fish oils.

Ingredient Purity

Generally speaking, krill is purer than fish because it is sourced from less contaminated waters, and it has a relatively short lifespan during which to accumulate toxins. However, this is only a consideration when it comes to lower-quality products. When deciding between a fish oil and krill oil that are both sourced by reputable companies and both comply with GOED standards, purity isn't a concern.

For your complete peace of mind and in the spirit of authentic transparency, NutriGold provides detailed certificates of analysis for all of our products on our Certificates of Analysis page. This includes third-party test results for heavy metals, microbes, and other potential marine contaminants.

The Extra Benefit of Astaxanthin

Krill Oil is naturally rich in astaxanthin, which has powerful antioxidant properties. Although the amount of astaxanthin is low compared to dedicated astaxanthin supplements, it is in a highly absorbable form, and works synergistically with krill oil to deliver compound benefits. Some fish oil supplements do contain astaxanthin, but it is added artificially. It doesn’t come from the fish oil itself.

Odors & Fishy Burps

While krill oil has a characteristically strong odor when the bottle is first opened, it does not produce any fishy aftertaste or fishy burps — a great advantage for individuals who cannot tolerate the fishy burps that fish oil products can sometimes produce. Of course, once again, this is really a question of quality.

Like any marine or plant oil, both fish oil and krill oil can oxidize if exposed to air. NutriGold's omega-3 oil products are processed in an environment that is strictly controlled to ensure oxygen exposure (and oxidation) is minimized. Freshness is preserved by encapsulating the oil soon after it is extracted and adding an antioxidant to protect it from oxidation. For krill oil, that antioxidant is its natural astaxanthin. For fish oil, we add mixed tocopherols to preserve freshness.

Still, it pays to be mindful about how you store them. Keep your omega-3 supplements in a cool, dry place, and never put them in direct sunlight. If you live in an unusually warm climate, it may be a good idea to refrigerate marine oils during hot / humid summer months to maintain freshness and extend shelf-life.


When it comes to choosing an omega-3 supplement, the best choice you can make is to get enough omega-3s in your diet, period. The decision between krill oil and fish oil doesn’t matter nearly as much as your decision to pick one instead of nothing at all. As for which is right for you, only you can make that judgement. Whichever you choose, it's always best to know the advantages of each. If you didn't before, well, now you do!

Typical fish oil and krill oil softgels
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