Can Fish Oil Supplement Cause Acid Reflux or Heartburn?

Fish oil is the primary source of omega-3 fatty acid. Fish oil is a popular dietary supplement taken by many people these days. It has several benefits to the body that includes healthy heart, strong bones, and high energy. Omega 3 fatty acid is one of the main fatty acids that are important for normal metabolism. These are essential fats for the body as it is required. It is one of the desirable fatty acids for the body. However, due to many reasons over consumption of omega-3 fatty acid is not good for the health which may cause different types of side-effects. Fish oil, the primary source of omega-3 fatty acid can also cause the side-effects.

Can Fish Oil Supplement Cause Acid Reflux or Heartburn?

What is Acid Reflux or Heart Burn?

Acid reflux happens when the digestive acids travel backward and upwards from your stomach to the esophagus. The acid traveling upwards causes burning sensation in your chest area and it feels like heart burn. Acid reflux gives a burning feeling and pain in the chest.

Can the Fish Oil Supplements Cause Acid Reflux?

As fish oil contains omega 3 fatty acids, people with a tendency of regular acid reflux and taking medication for remedy can experience bowel irritation after consuming the supplement in high quantity. This may lead to acid reflux. People with unhealthy lifestyle like smoking and drinking habit or have the tendency to stay up late can experience this problem more than other people with healthy lifestyle.

How to Prevent Acid Reflux Caused by Fish Oil Supplements?

The problem of acid reflux or heart burn due to fish oil supplements can be reversed. Many people want to get the full benefits of fish oil supplements but could not take them regularly due to acid reflux and heartburn. Some preventive measures could be taken to eliminate the risk of acid reflux right after taking these supplements and these are:

  • The fish oil supplements should not be taken in empty stomach. As the ingredient in the capsules remains in oily form, the oil may get back into the esophagus region in case the stomach is empty. So, the best time of taking the supplements is right before a meal.
  • Water in the stomach make the oil float upwards and reach in the esophagus region. So, water should not be taken in a large quantity right after taking the fish oil supplements.

How to Prevent Acid Reflux Caused by Fish Oil Supplements?


Fish oil supplements can provide you an opportunity to take in the daily required dose of omega-3 fatty acid without actually cooking the fish in your kitchen. There might be many positive effects of consuming fish oil but there are also experiences or negative side effects such as acid reflux or heart burn. Fish oil supplements must be taken with care to avoid the adverse side effects. Excessive consumption of it can lead to acid reflux condition and other symptoms.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 26, 2021

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