Chicago, IL, April 23, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Krill oil supplements have surged in popularity. People take krill oil for various benefits, and many studies suggest krill oil is superior to fish oil.
To address this demand, supplement companies have launched a range of krill oil products. You can find dozens of krill oil supplements on Amazon and other retailers. You can find krill oil in stores and pharmacies.
Krill oil is the real deal. But with so many krill oil supplements available, it’s hard to know which krill oil supplement to buy. To help, our editorial team ranked the best krill oil supplements of 2020.
The best krill oil supplements of 2020 include all of the following:
BioTRUST’s OmegaKrill is an omega-3 fatty acid supplement with 1,040mg of DHA per serving. By taking OmegaKrill daily, BioTrust claims you can support brain, heart, eye, joint, and immune health, among other benefits. The omega-3 fatty acids in OmegaKrill are in natural triglyceride form to support optimal absorption, which is why some prefer OmegaKrill to traditional fish oil supplements.
We also appreciate BioTRUST’s 3mg of AstaREAL astaxanthin per serving, boosting the antioxidant content of OmegaKrill. That’s the highest astaxanthin dosage on this list. And, with no fish burps, 3 convenient softgels, and a 5-star rating from the International Fish Oil Standards program, OmegaKrill separates itself from other top-rated krill oil supplements – although pricing is slightly higher than most competing formulas on this list.
1MD describes its KrillMD formula as a “clinical strength” omega-3 fatty acid formula. The formula contains pure, sustainable Antarctic krill oil – similar to most other krill oil formulas on this list. You get EPA, DHA, and astaxanthin in each serving. And, with 1,600mg of formula per serving, it’s a more powerful dose than most other krill and fish oil formulas.
1MD uses a special type of krill oil called K-REAL Pure Krill Oil. That krill oil has specifically been studied for its benefits. 1MD markets the formula as a joint health solution. With 2mg of astaxanthin per serving, KrillMD contains less astaxanthin than BioTRUST OmegaKrill, the top-rated krill oil supplement on our list, which contains 3mg of astaxanthin per serving.
Zenith Labs Omega 3-7-9 + Krill
Zenith Labs offers one of the most unique krill oil supplements on this list. The supplement is the only formula on the market with this specific ratio of omega 3, omega 7, and omega 9 fatty acids. According to Zenith Labs, these fatty acids work together to provide additional antioxidant benefits.
To enhance the effectiveness further, Zenith Labs adds krill oil to the formula. The company claims krill oil helps with absorption and potency. Some of the advertised benefits of Omega 3-7-9 + Krill, according to Zenith Labs, include easy fat loss, a better immune system, better brain health, improved energy, and reduced joint pain and stiffness, among other benefits.
Each serving contains 350mg of EPA, 250mg of DHA, 200mg of omega 7 fatty acid, 50mg of omega 9 fatty acid, 100mg of Neptune krill oil, and 2.5mg of astaxanthin, making this formula one of the best on our list in terms of pricing and value by dosage.
VitaPost Krill Oil Plus
VitaPost’s Krill Oil Plus is a popular and well-rated krill oil supplement that claims to support heart, joint, sin, and brain health. VitaPost describes their formula as “the natural omega-3 superfood.”
The main drawback with Krill Oil Plus is that it has a much lower dose than higher-ranked krill oil supplements on this list. The supplement contains 500mg of krill oil per capsule, delivering 100mg of EPA and DHA along with 100mg of phospholipids. While other krill oil supplements list their specific dosages of EPA, DHA, and astaxanthin, Krill Oil Plus does not.
Fortunately, Krill Oil Plus is much less expensive than higher-ranked options, providing twice as many servings at roughly half the cost. The krill oil is also sustainably sourced from Antarctic krill, and VitaPost’s krill source is certified by Friend of the Sea, giving customers better peace of mind they’re dealing with a reputable krill oil provider.
LiveWell’s KrillWell is a certified sustainable krill oil supplement that contains a “clinically proven” dose of K-REAL. K-REAL, as mentioned above, is a special type of krill oil that has completed various studies to verify its benefits.
KrillWell contains 1,500mg of pure krill oil in each 3 softgel serving. You get 180mg of total omega fatty acids, including 90mg of EPA, 60mg of DHA, and 285mg of phospholipids. There’s also 600mcg of astaxanthin – a lower dose than other supplements, but similar to the astaxanthin content found in natural krill oil formulas.
LiveWell markets their KrillWell supplement as a way to support heart, joint, and cognitive health. They also claim their formula is twice as easy for your body to absorb as traditional fish oil supplements – and without the fishy burps. And, despite having a comparable dose to top-ranked options on our list, KrillWell is much cheaper, providing 90 capsules (30 servings) in each $30 bottle.
Transparent Labs Krill Oil
Transparent Labs Krill Oil, like most other krill oil supplements listed here, is extracted from an Antarctic krill species rich with EPA and DHA. Transparent Labs Krill Oil is part of the company’s CoreSeries of supplements. Transparent Labs claims the formula is easy to digest with no fishy burp or aftertaste, and that it supports brain, heart, and joint function, among other benefits.
Transparent Labs Krill Oil contains 1,000mg of Superba krill oil per serving, delivering 400mg of phospholipids and 220mg of omega-3 fatty acids (including 120mg of EPA and 55mg of DHA). There’s also 80mcg of astaxanthin, which is one of the lowest astaxanthin dosages on this list.
Overall, Transparent Labs CoreSeries Krill Oil provides a decent dose of krill oil at a reasonable rate – although it lacks the astaxanthin content and high dosages to compete with the highest-ranked krill oils on our list.
Regenurex’s Astaxanthin is the first on this list marketed specifically as an astaxanthin supplement – not a krill oil formula. In fact, Regenurex’s Astaxanthin does not contain any krill oil or fish oil. Instead, the formula only contains the antioxidant astaxanthin.
Regenurex markets their Astaxanthin formula as a way to fight infection and support immunity. The supplement reduces inflammation, according to Regenurex, which makes it easier for your body to fight infections. Regenurex also claims their formula can repair damaged cells, improve vision, reduce brain fog, and promote anti-aging benefits, among other effects.
If you want the highest possible dosage of astaxanthin, then Regenurex Astaxanthin is the best option on this list. It delivers 12mg of astaxanthin per serving. If you want omega-3 fatty acids, EPA, and DHA, however, then Regenurex Astaxanthin is not the right choice.
Bronson Antarctic Krill Oil
Bronson Antarctic Krill Oil is one of the top-rated krill oil supplements on Amazon. With 3,500+ reviews and an average score of 4.6 out of 5, it’s also one of the most popular krill oil supplements available today.
Bronson Antarctic Krill Oil is one of the best-value krill oil supplements on our list. Each 2 softgel serving contains 1,000mg of Antarctic krill oil, delivering 200mg of omega-3 fatty acids with 120mg of EPA and 80mg of DHA per serving. You get 200mcg of astaxanthin – a lower dose than higher-ranked krill oil supplements but not a bad dose nonetheless. At $15 per bottle, you won’t find a better-value krill oil supplement available today.
Sports Research Antarctic Krill Oil
Sports Research’s Antarctic Krill Oil is one of several formulas on this list to use Superba krill oil. Each 2 softgel serving of SR Antarctic Krill Oil contains 1,000mg of Superba 2 krill oil, delivering 240mg of omega-3 fatty acids with 136mg of EPA and 60mg of DHA per serving. There’ also 400mg of phospholipids and 500mcg of astaxanthin – both of which are impressive dosages compared to other formulas on this list.
At $30 for 60 servings, SR Antarctic Krill Oil is tied with Bronson Antarctic Krill Oil as the best-value supplement on our list. You won’t find a nutritional supplement with a comparable dose of krill oil at this price range – and that’s one of several reasons why SR Antarctic Krill Oil continues to be a best-seller on Amazon (8,400+ reviews with an average rating of 4.7 stars out of 5).
Onnit Krill Oil
Onnit’s Krill Oil can purportedly optimize how you move, how you think, and your overall vitality, among other benefits. Onnit Krill Oil is similar to other krill oil supplements on this list, delivering a mix of EPA, DHA, and astaxanthin in each serving.
Unfortunately for Onnit, dosages are lower than competing formulas at this price range, which is why Onnit Krill Oil appears further down our list. Each 2 softgel serving contains 1,000mg of krill oil with 400mg of phospholipids and 240mg of omega-3 fatty acids (130mg EPA and 60mg of DHA) per serving, along with 150mcg of astaxanthin. Those aren’t bad dosages – but there are better and stronger options available.
How We Ranked
All krill oil supplements make similar claims about their benefits and effects. To separate the good krill oil supplements from the best supplements, our editorial team used the following ranking factors:
EPA and DHA Dosage: All krill oil supplements contain omega-3 fatty acids. However, EPA and DHA dosage – and the EPA/DHA ratio – varied widely between formulas. EPA and DHA are two crucial active ingredients within krill oil, and they’re responsible for most of the benefits of krill oil We preferred krill oil supplements with higher dosages of EPA and DHA compared to other formulas.
Astaxanthin Dosage: Krill oil naturally contains a carotenoid called astaxanthin, which acts as an antioxidant. However, astaxanthin dosage varies widely between formulas, with supplements containing anywhere from 200mcg to 3,000mcg (3mg) of astaxanthin per serving. Astaxanthin is powerful even at lower dosages, although the highest-ranked krill oil supplements on our list all contained significant astaxanthin dosages.
Manufacturer Reputation & Transparency: Some krill oil supplement manufacturers are looking to make quick money on a trendy supplement. Others have a long and proven reputation for selling quality products. We emphasized krill oil supplement companies with a proven reputation for transparency, quality, and good manufacturing practices.
Lab Testing & Research: Some krill oil supplement companies invest in lab testing, clinical trials, and scientific studies. Other supplements simply trust their label to be accurate with hardly any verification.
Price & Value: Krill oil supplements are typically priced at $0.50 to $2 per serving, depending on the quality and dosage. We featured supplements for all price ranges and budgets, although we emphasized good value across all krill oil formulas.
Advertised Health Benefits: Supplement companies cannot advertise specific health benefits, although some companies advertise their krill oil supplements as virtual ‘cure-alls’, claiming they’ll solve all your health problems in weeks. That’s not true – and good krill oil supplement companies avoid listing specific health benefits.
Sustainable Sourcing: Most krill oil is harvested from pristine waters in the Antarctic Ocean. In fact, most krill oil supplements use the same handful of fishing companies as sources. Good krill oil supplement companies are certified as sustainable – say, through Friend of the Sea certification.
Based on all of these factors, we ranked the best krill oil supplements available today.
Scientific Evidence for Krill Oil
Krill oil has surged in popularity in recent years. People have taken fish oil supplements for decades – and now krill oil is marketed as a new and improved version of fish oil.
Overall, krill oil supplements advertise similar benefits to fish oil supplements: they claim to support heart health, brain health, and overall health in various ways. As science increasingly studies krill oil and its benefits, we’re learning more about how krill oil works – and why it’s a more effective version of fish oil.
This 2007 study showed that krill oil supplements can lead to a significant drop in inflammation. Researchers gave krill oil supplements to older adults with arthritis and observed a substantial drop in CRP (inflammation) levels.
Reducing inflammation can boost immunity, and one study found a specific connection between krill oil supplementation and immunity. In 2013, researchers found that krill oil lowered inflammation by reducing tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-a), one of the most important biomarkers of inflammation. Based on the results of this study, researchers believed krill oil has significant anti-inflammatory, immune-boosting effects.
This study found a similar connection between krill oil and inflammation. Researchers gave participants a 300mg krill oil supplement or a placebo, then observed significantly lower inflammation in the krill oil group. After just 1 month of krill oil supplementation, the krill oil group had 30% lower inflammation than the placebo group.
Some krill oil supplements are marketed as solutions for joint health. Multiple studies support the ability of krill oil supplements to reduce joint pain and increase mobility. In this study, researchers gave adults with mild knee pain a krill oil supplement for 30 days. After a month, participants reported significant reductions in knee pain while standing and sleeping along with an increased range of motion. Other studies have connected krill oil to reduced arthritis pain and similar benefits.
Others take krill oil for cardiovascular health or heart health. Based on multiple studies, krill oil seems to have a statistically significant impact on heart health – particularly with cholesterol.
In this 2014 study, researchers found krill oil supplementation led to a statistically significant drop in serum triglycerides without increasing low density lipoprotein cholesterol (the bad type of cholesterol). 300 adults took a krill oil supplement for 12 weeks, using a dosage of 0.5g to 4g of krill oil per day or a placebo. After 12 weeks, researchers observed significant improvements in cholesterol readings.
A 2017 study found similar heart health boosting results. In 2017, researchers reviewed all available evidence on the cardiovascular effects of krill oil and found that krill oil supplementation “can reduce low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides.”
Some krill oil supplements are marketed specifically for cognition, and some people take krill oil to support brain health. Multiple studies have connected krill oil to various brain health benefits.
This 2014 study published in Nutrients found that the EPA and DHA in krill oil protect the brain from inflammation and oxidative damage, potentially reducing the risk of brain disease. Researchers believe that those who take DHA and EPA in normal doses have a lower risk of autism, dementia, depression, schizophrenia, and epilepsy, among other conditions.
Other studies have connected krill oil supplementation to reduced symptoms of depression and improved cognitive function. Some studies have observed improved symptoms of diabetes, a reduction in dry eye, or even weight loss, among other benefits.
Krill oil is purer than fish oil. Krill are further down the food chain than fish, which means there’s less toxic accumulation in krill than in fish. That means fewer toxins end up in the finished product, allowing you to enjoy omega-3 fatty acids without toxic overload.
Krill oil is also more sustainable than fish oil. There’s an abundance of krill in the world’s oceans. Krill have short lifespans and reproduce quickly, making them ideal for use in supplements. Even when harvested in high quantities there are plenty of krill in the ocean – which is why krill oil supplements are seen as more sustainable than fish oil supplements.
Overall, krill oil and the active ingredients inside krill oil have been extensively studied for various benefits. When krill oil companies suggest their formulas have heart, brain, and overall health benefits, they’re citing real scientific evidence.
Krill Oil Dosage
Krill oil dosages are similar across krill oil supplements. Most krill oil supplements contain 500mg to 1,500mg of krill oil per serving along with 50mg to 250mg each of EPA and DHA.
The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends getting 250mg to 500mg of EPA and DHA (total) per day.
In the 2014 study linked above, researchers noticed benefits when giving participants low, medium, and high doses of fish oil. Participants took 0.5, 1, 2, and 4g doses of fish oil, with researchers observing significant benefits at all dosages.
In other words, follow the recommended dosage instructions on your krill oil supplement.
Krill Oil Side Effects
Krill oil is well-tolerated by healthy adults when used in normal dosages. Krill oil has proven safe across thousands of studies, and most people who take krill oil at normal dosages report no side effects whatsoever.
Some studies have shown krill oil could interact with blood thinning medication and slow blood clotting. Your doctor may advise you not to take krill oil or fish oil within 2 weeks of surgery.
Otherwise, common mild side effects of krill oil include fishy breath or fishy burps, bloating, upset stomach, constipation, diarrhea, and general digestive issues.
Krill Oil FAQs
Q: What is krill oil?
A: Krill oil is an extract from a shrimp-like crustacean called krill.
Q: What’s the difference between krill oil and fish oil?
A: Krill oil contains the same two fatty acids as fish oil, including EPA and DHA. However, krill oil supplements tend to have fewer toxins, less fishy aftertaste, and purer-quality than fish oil supplements.
Q: Where does krill oil come from?
A: Most krill oil is sourced from the pristine waters of the Antarctic Ocean. In fact, many krill oil supplements use the same fishing suppliers.
Q: What are krill?
A: Krill are among the lowest members of the food chain in the ocean. They’re tiny, shrimp-like planktonic crustaceans living throughout the open ocean. They’re the primary food source of a variety of larger oceanic mammals – like baleen whales.
Q: What should I look for in a krill oil supplement?
A: The best krill oil supplements have high dosages of krill oil, EPA, DHA, and astaxanthin.
Q: Is krill oil less toxic than fish oil?
A: Theoretically, krill oil should contain fewer toxins than fish oil. Krill are further down the food chain, which means there’s less toxic bio-accumulation in krill than in fish.
Q: Is krill oil more sustainable than fish oil?
A: Krill oil production is more sustainable than fish oil production simply because there more krill in the ocean. The world’s oceans are filled with krill. The tiny creatures reproduce quickly and have short lifespans, making them ideal for use in supplements even when harvested in high numbers.
Q: Does the body absorb krill oil more easily than fish oil?
A: Some evidence shows that your body absorbs krill oil more easily because it contains phospholipids, which are helpful fats that enhance absorption. Krill oil contains phospholipids, although ifsh oil does not.
Q: What are the benefits of krill oil?
A: Krill oil has been shown to support heart health, brain health, and other aspects of health and wellness. Your body needs omega-3 fatty acids like DHA and EPA to function, and that’s why many take a fish oil or krill oil supplement.
Q: What is astaxanthin?
A: Krill oil naturally contains a carotenoid called astaxanthin. It’s a dye that gives krill their unique color. Studies show that astaxanthin is linked with various benefits. It acts as an antioxidant, supporting healthy inflammation throughout the body.
Q: What’s the best krill oil supplement?
A: Any of the top-ranked krill oil supplements on our list are among the best krill oil formulas available today.
Q: Is krill oil safe?
A: Krill oil is safe for most healthy people to take when following the dosage instructions on your supplement. However, you should talk to your doctor before taking any supplement.
Krill oil is like a new and improved version of fish oil. Krill oil is linked with many of the same benefits as fish oil – like heart and brain health. However, krill oil could be purer and more sustainable than fish oil – and it also contains added ingredients like phospholipids and astaxanthin that could support absorption.
To enjoy the benefits of krill oil, consider buying any of the top-ranked krill oil supplements listed above.
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