A women holding a vegan omega-3 supplement capsule

Best Vegan Omega-3 Supplement – 10 Top Brands Compared

The importance of omega-3 fatty acids in our diets is well supported, but the research is mixed on whether or not supplementing omega-3s is beneficial or necessary. 

Ultimately, the goal should be to acquire all of your nutrition from whole food, but there are instances in which that may not be possible due to limited availability, personal life choices, physiological or medical issues, and/or changes in the quality of available foods (case in point, produce grown in mineral depleted soils).

Fish oil remains the most recommended supplement within the health and fitness community, but some omega-3 supplements derived from algae oil actually provide higher concentrations of EPA and DHA than fish oil, are often less expensive, and their production can be less damaging to the environment.

For those looking for an algae based vegan omega-3 supplement, we have examined 10 of the top selling brands, and have selected a favorite. Please let us know if you agree by commenting below. 

Different Types of Omega-3s

Not all omega-3 fatty acids are created equal. Of the 11 types of omega-3s, the 3 most important are alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexoenoic acid (DHA).

ALA is mostly found in plant foods, and is the most common omega-3 fatty acid in most diets, however it must be converted into EPA or DHA before it can be used in the body for anything other than energy.

This conversion process is highly inefficient, which is why those following vegan or vegetarian diets are often lacking in EPA and DHA. 

EPA is essential for numerous physiological processes in the body, and for reducing inflammation, while DHA is necessary for proper brain development, and is an important structural component of your skin and the retinas in you eyes.

EPA and DHA are often referred to as “the marine omega-3s” because they are mostly found in fatty fish, seaweed and algae. Seaweed and algae should therefore be consumed regularly or potentially supplemented in order to get adequate amounts of EPA and DHA while following a vegan keto diet.

Why Algae is Better than Flax for Omega-3s

Flax oil has been a popular omega-3 supplement, even among those that consume animal sourced foods, but as noted above, flax contains predominately ALA omega-3s, as well as a fair amount of omega-6s, which can be inflammatory.

Flaxseed is also a rich source of lignans and isoflavones which are phytoestrogens that closely resemble endogenous estrogen, and have been shown to exert hormonal effects.

Algae oil provides a high concentration of both EPA and DHA, even higher than krill Oil in some instances, and some research has suggested that these coveted fatty acids are more easily absorbed when sourced from algae. 

While krill oil can be sustainably sourced, algae oil is often marketed as a better option for the environment. Algae oil also doesn’t seem to produce the same fishy aftertaste or “fish burps” as traditional fish oil or krill oil. 

One key advantage of krill oil however, is that it contains Phosphatidylcholine which helps protect cell walls, supports cellular communication, and improves the cell’s ability to absorb nutrients, and Astaxanthin, which is a natural preservative that helps prevent the oil from going rancid.

Rating Vegan Omega-3 Supplements

While there are some slight differences in the makeup of the capsules among different vegan omega-3 supplements, our primary focus when rating these products was on the amount of DHA and EPA per capsule, and the price per capsule.

The presence or absence of carrageenan in each product was also taken into account when selecting our top pick. Carrageenan is a food additive derived from red seaweed that is used as a emulsifier in many food products. While food grade carrageenan is generally believed to be safe to consume, degraded carrageenan, also known as poligeenan, is a proven carcinogen (cancer causing substance).

While it is likely that all of the products we reviewed contain food grade ingredients, supplements are not regulated the same way other food products are, and since carrageenan is not a necessary ingredient, we placed greater value on the supplements that did not contain it at all. 

Our #1 Favorite Vegan Omega-3 Supplement

Sports Research Vegan Omega-3

Sports Research (SR) is our preferred supplement brand for algae oil, and also one of our favorite krill oil supplement brands.

A single softgel contains 210mg of DHA, and 105mg of EPA, and the price per capsule is $0.37 when purchased on Amazon

Pros: High concentration of DHA and EPA per capsule, and it does not contain carrageenan.

Cons: It is not the cheapest product on this list, and only comes in containers containing 60 capsules. This however, is likely due to the fact that containers containing more than a month worth of servings has a higher likelihood of going rancid before it is fully used.

10 Top Vegan Omega-3 Supplement Brands Compared

We examined a variety of the best selling, and highly marketed algae based omega-3 supplements, but instead of describing each one individually, we thought it would be easier to simply create a table. 

Vegan Omega-3 Supplement Table

Product Name# of Capsules Per Bottle (Best Value)DHA Per/CapsuleEPA Per/CapsulePrice Per CapsuleContains CarrageenanNotes
SR Vegan Omega 360210mg105mg$0.37NoOur top choice and Amazon Best Seller.
Fresh Field Vegan Omega-360 225mg0mg$0.40YesContains DPA instead of EPA. DPA requires conversion to EPA in the body.
Ovega-390270mg135mg$0.39YesHighest concentration of both DHA & EPA, but contains carrageenan.
Amandean Vegan Omega-3120150mg75mg$0.25NoLower price due to smaller capsules and larger container.
Zenwise Vegan Omega-3120150mg75mg$0.23YesLowest price per capsule.
Testa Vegan Omega-360250mg125mg$0.42YesHigh concentration of both DHA & EPA. Slightly higher price, and contains carrageenan.
TAHIRO Vegan Omega-360150mg75mg$0.33OptionalMiddle of the pack in both concentration and price.
Sapling Vegan Omega-360150mg75mg$0.32NoMiddle of the pack in both concentration and price.
The Veggie Dr. QWELL
60350mg20mg$0.40NoHighest concentration of DHA, but low in EPA. Contains DPA which can be converted to EPA in the body.
IWI Omega-312050mg62.5$0.46YesHeavily marketed. Low concentrations of both DHA & EPA. High priced and contains carrageenan.

Do you agree with our top pick? Which vegan omega-3 supplement do you use/prefer and why? Please consider sharing your experience by commenting below in order to help others living a fit keto lifestyle.

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