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Ask an Avera Heart Hospital Dietitian

Personalize your nutrition.  If you have nutrition questions, this site allows you to chat with Registered Dietitian and Certified Wellness Coach from the Avera Heart Hospital, Nikki Ver Steeg about diet and lifestyle modification.

Personalized nutrition means personal success.

New Questions & Answers

Q: What makes a good fish oil supplement?
Bob,   Sioux Falls, SD

A: Fish oil is highly unstable. As soon as it is extracted from the fish and exposed to oxygen, metals, light and heat it begins to be damaged. Therefore it is essential to look at the following when choosing a fish oil capsule: Company has Good Manufacturing Practices Free of pesticides and heavy metals (like mercury, lead, dioxins, PCBs, yeasts, molds and bacteria) Third-party certified for purity and optimal quality Antioxidant blend added for freshness and stability Meet label claims for EPA/DHA content Look for the Following on Labels of Supplements: USP and NSF - This is not there to guarantee that the product is safe and effective, but it does indicate the manufacturer has submitted the product for testing to show it contains what is stated on the label. If in doubt, contact the manufacturer for their analysis or purity statement.

If you have any questions or problems always see your health care provider.


The "Ask the Expert" website is intended to provide its users with general information about nutritional topics through a question and answer format that will enable you to ask a dietitian questions of a general nature pertaining to nutrition issues.  This question and answer forum should not take the place of personal and professional healthcare, and is provided for general informational purposes only. You should only take medical advice from your physician, and if you have health concerns, seek the advice of your primary healthcare professional immediately.  If this is a medical emergency, please dial 911.  The health professional has a right to refuse to answer any question.  Not all questions and responses will be posted for viewing by users of the website, but questions selected for publication will include the questioner's first name and town. If you would not like your name or town included, please enter this information as "withheld."  Please allow up to a week for answers to post.
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