Best Vegan Omega 3 Supplements (UK)

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As omega 3 is most commonly found in fish, it’s something that almost all vegans and vegetarians struggle to get enough of in their diets. If this is a concern for you, then you’ll be pleased to know that there are lots of vegan omega 3 supplements to choose from.

Instead of fish oil, the best vegan omega 3 supplements are made from algae.

Rather than the algae being eaten by krill, which is eaten by fish and then eaten by humans, we can skip the middlemen (or middle fish) and get our omega 3 from algal oil supplements.

But with so many vegan-friendly algae omega 3 supplements to choose from in the UK, how do we know which is best? Are the more expensive brands worth the extra?

I’ve tried lots of different omega 3 supplements and have spent many hours analyzing what’s inside the top vegan omega 3 brands. So, read on to discover which is the best vegan omega 3 for you…

My #1 Rated Pick

Performance Lab Omega-3

  • Tasteless & odourless
  • Easy to swallow
  • Eco-friendly
  • Great price

I’ve tried lots of vegan omega 3 supplements and Performance Lab is my favourite by far. These algae omega 3 capsules are filled with potent, high-quality omega 3 fatty acids. They’re tasteless, odourless and easy to swallow.

Comparison of the best vegan omega 3 brands

This table compares the most popular vegan omega 3 supplements. Further on in this guide, there’s also a review of each one.

BrandWhy choose?PriceBuy online
Performance Lab
Performance Lab
Best overall£££Check Latest Price
Vegums
Vegums
Best gummyCheck Latest Price
Feel
Feel
SubscriptionCheck Latest Price
MyVegan
Vegan brand££Check Latest Price
Nutravita
Low priceCheck Latest Price
Vegetology
Money-back guarantee££Check Latest Price

What you need to know before buying omega 3

Before we get into the detailed omega 3 reviews, you might be interested to learn why it’s so hard for vegans and vegetarians to get enough omega 3, even if we consume lots of omega 3-rich foods…

The different types of omega 3

There are three types of omega 3: Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). ALA is found mostly in plants, whereas EPA and DHA are found mostly in animals like fish.

ALA needs to be converted into EPA or DHA before it can be used by our bodies. Unfortunately, this conversion process is very inefficient in humans. Only a small percentage of the ALA that we consume is actually converted into the type of omega 3 that our bodies can use [Source].

The three kinds of omega 3:

  • ALA – Found in plant oils
  • EPA – Found in marine oils (or can be made in our bodies from ALA)
  • DHA – Found in marine oils (or can be made in our bodies from ALA)

Sources of plant-based omega 3

sources of omega 3

Omega 3 fats are most commonly found in oily fish like kippers, trout, herring and sardines. That’s why the NHS recommends that people eat at least two portions of fish per week.

As vegans and vegetarians do not eat fish, it’s important to consume omega 3 either from plant-based sources or from supplements.

As omega 3 is rarely included in vegan multivitamins, you’ll need a separate supplement if you ruggle to get enough from the food that you eat.

Sources of omega 3 for vegans and vegetarians:

  • Flaxseed oil and rapeseed oil
  • Soya-based foods (such as tofu)
  • Walnuts
  • Spinach and kale
  • Chia, flax and hemp seeds

Suggested read: Are fish animals or not?

How much omega 3 does a vegan need?

It’s recommended that adults consume around 500mg of DHA and EPA omega 3 fats each day. As vegans do not eat fish, they should aim to eat more plant foods that are rich in omega 3. Alternatively, the required 500mg of omega 3 could be consumed with the help of supplements. [Sources: 1, 2]

Because the conversion from ALA to EPA and DHA is so inefficient, we need to consume an awful lot of ALA to ensure that we get enough EPA and DHA fatty acids to keep us healthy.

For example, a serving of seven walnuts contains 2.5g of ALA. But as only 5% of this is successfully converted to EPA and DHA by our bodies, that will result in only 125mg of usable omega 3. We would need to eat 28 walnuts (containing 740 calories) to hit our daily omega 3 goals.

plant based omega 3

How to get enough omega 3 as a vegan

While fish oil is the most common source of EPA and DHA, it’s possible for vegans to consume EPA and DHA directly through algal oil, which is vegan-friendly.

Algal oil is made from certain types of microalgae. Usually, fish eat these tiny organisms and convert them into essential fatty acids that are stored in their bodies. When humans consume algal oil in a capsule form, fish don’t need to be involved.

The easiest and safest way to consume microalgae is by choosing a good algae omega 3 supplement.

How to buy the best omega 3 supplements for you

All supplements are not created equally. Far from it, in fact. When choosing the best vegan omega 3 supplements, there are a few things that you should take into consideration.

The best form to take vegan omega 3

The best way to take omega 3 is in capsules. If you struggle to swallow capsules, chewable gummy omega 3 sweets are also a good option.

  • Capsules – Also known as softgels, these fit the maximum amount of nutrients into an easy-to-swallow capsule
  • Gummies – Perfect for kids and people who don’t like to swallow pills, the best gummies taste just like sweets
  • Liquids – Similar to medicine or cod liver oil, vegan omega 3 liquid never tastes great
  • Powders – These are made from ground-up seeds, so you need to consume a lot and they are high in calories

Ingredients that vegans should avoid in omega 3

  • Fish oil – Standard omega 3 supplements are made from fish, so be sure to check that yours is fish-free
  • Gelatine – Made with the bones, tendons and ligaments of pigs, cows and sheep, this is a common ingredient used to make capsules
  • Carrageenan – Used as a gelatine alternative in some vegetarian capsules, this is an extract from a red seaweed that’s native to the British Isles. It’s been linked to digestive problems and there have been calls to ban its use in food

What makes supplements eco-friendly?

  • Packaging – Choose plastic-free packaging where possible, or ensure that it can be recycled
  • Made in UK – Choose supplements that are made in the UK for a lower carbon footprint
  • Avoid fish – Seafood is not sustainable, whereas lab-grown microalgae is

Reviews of the best vegan omega 3 supplements

1. Performance Lab

⭐ Best Overall

DHA: 600 mg ✅ EPA: 300 mg

If you want the best of the best, Performance Lab omega 3 softgels are the very best vegan omega 3 supplements that you can buy.

Formulated in soft and easy-to-swallow capsules, these supplements have no taste or smell. Just don’t try to bite one open as I did for an experiment. It actually tastes like algae inside!

What sets Performance Lab vitamins aside from other vegan omega 3 supplements is the high quality of the ingredients which are delivered in precise, potent doses.

These are the world’s first carrageenan-free softgels. Once swallowed, they disintegrate easily so that your body can benefit from the nutrients without any discomfort.

Pros

  • No smell or aftertaste
  • Easy to swallow
  • UK company
  • No GMO or synthetic additives
  • Fast delivery

Cons

  • Plastic container (recyclable)
  • A little pricey

2. Vegums

⭐ Best Gummy

DHA: 80mg ✅ Vitamin E: 8mg (67% NRV)

If you prefer chewable supplements to anything that you have to swallow whole, then Vegums are the best vegan omega 3 gummies. Shaped like Haribo bears and with a delicious orange flavour, these vegan gummies taste amazing.

These vitamins come in plastic-free bags that are made from biodegradable cornstarch inside a funky cardboard tube. You’ll also get a handy metal tin free with your first order.

Vegums omega 3 gummies are suitable for vegans, vegetarian and omnivore adults, as well as kids aged three and over. Kids can take one, where adults should take two per day.

I love that these gummies include added vitamin E to give your immune system a boost. I just wish that they had a higher dose of DHA and also perhaps some EPA as capsules do.

Pros

  • Delicious orange flavour
  • Made in UK
  • Free metal tin
  • Plastic-free packaging
  • Certified by The Vegan Society

Cons

  • Low levels of omega 3
  • Contains sugar

3. Feel

DHA: 300 mg ✅ EPA: 150 mg

Feel vegan-friendly algae omega 3 supplements are a good alternative to Performance Lab capsules. Depending on whether you make a one-off purchase or set up a recurring subscription, these capsules could work out cheaper.

They use the exact same source of DHA and EPA, which is life’s OMEGA 60. The difference is that these capsules contain half as much.

If you eat a decent amount of plant-based omega 3 rich food already, these could be the best option for you.

Pros

  • Made in UK
  • No GMO
  • Plastic-free packaging
  • Free delivery
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Cons

  • Minty flavour isn’t to everyone’s liking
  • Not as potent as others

Get 20% OFF with discount code OMEGA20


4. MyVegan

MyVegan omega 3

DHA: 250 mg ✅ EPA: 125 mg

MyVegan Omega is another algae-based omega 3 supplement that uses life’s OMEGA 60, although in lower amounts than the leading brand, Performance Lab.

The bottle specifies that you only need to take one per day, whereas other supplements require two. Yet these have less than half of the omega 3 per dose.

A very important thingto consider with MyVegan Omega 3 is that the capsule shell is made with carrageenan. This food additive has been linked to digestive problems, IBS, colitis and colon cancer. [Source]

Pros

  • No taste
  • Take one per day

Cons

  • Contains carrageenan
  • Plastic packaging
  • Strong smell
  • Not as potent as others

5. Nutravita

⭐ Cheapest

DHA: 600 mg ✅ EPA: 300 mg

Available to buy on Amazon for a low price, Nutravita vegan omega 3 softgels are good for anyone who doesn’t want to spend a lot of money on supplements.

The directions say to take two per day, which will give you a good amount of omega 3, equivalent to the top brand in this list.

Again, this product contains carrageenan, a type of seaweed that is used as an alternative to gelatine for vegan capsules. You’ll need to do research to make up your own mind about whether this is a substance that you’re happy to consume or not.

Pros

  • Easy to swallow
  • No aftertaste
  • No GMO

Cons

  • Contains carrageenan
  • Plastic packaging
  • Strong smell

6. Vegetology

DHA: 534 mg ✅ EPA: 324 mg ✅ Vitamin D3: 5 mcg (100% NRV)

Vegetology’s Opti3 formula contains a decent amount of omega 3 plus added plant-sourced Vitamin D, something that vegans are often deficient in.

While the bottle looks like plastic, it’s actually a CO2 neutral eco-plastic that’s made from sugar cane. It can be recycled, but if it’s not then it will biodegrade into pure water within ten years.

Again, these capsules contain the much-debated but often included additive carrageenan, which some people choose to avoid.

Pros

  • Easy to swallow
  • No aftertaste
  • No GMO
  • Certified by The Vegan Society
  • Money-back guarantee

Cons

  • Contains carrageenan
  • Plastic packaging (recyclable and biodegradable)

FAQs about vegan omega 3

What is omega 3 and why do we need it?

Omega 3 fatty acids, also known as omega 3 oils, are polyunsaturated fatty acids. They are widely found in nature and play an important role in the human diet.

The health benefits of omega 3

Research has suggested that omega 3 may help to:

  • Enhance brain performance
  • Maintain eye health
  • Support cardiovascular health
  • Stimulate protein synthesis
  • Soothe aching muscles and joints

What are the symptoms of omega 3 deficiency?

The main signs and symptoms of an omega 3 deficiency include:

  • Skin irritation and dryness
  • Low mood, tiredness and depression
  • Dry eyes
  • Joint pain and stiffness
  • Hair loss and breakage
  • Thin, peeling nails

[Source]

How common is omega 3 deficiency?

A recent study has shown that 96% of adults do not get enough omega 3. These adults will have varying degrees of omega 3 deficiency. While many may show no symptoms at all, others may be at increased risk of serious illnesses such as cardiovascular disease.

Vegans and vegetarians are at an increased risk of omega 3 deficiency as they do not consume fish.

How long does it take for omega 3 to work?

Recovering from an omega 3 deficiency can take anywhere from six weeks to six months depending on the level of deficiency and how much omega 3 is consumed to combat the issue. To combat a deficiency with supplements, you should take them every day for at least three months.

Are vegan omega 3 supplements effective?

Vegan omega 3 supplements that are made from algae are just as effective as fish oil. Rather than eating fish that have consumed algae, we can consume that same type of algae ourselves in capsule form.

Some vegan omega 3 supplements are made from seeds such as chia and hemp. These aren’t as effective as algae-based vegan omega 3 as they don’t contain the full range of essential fatty acids.

Is vegan omega 3 as good a fish oil?

Vegan-friendly algae omega 3 is better than fish oil. It contains all of the same nutrients, but without the pollutants, fishy aftertaste and damage to our oceans.

The NHS recommends that girls and women of childbearing age eat no more than two portions of oily fish per week. This is because the pollutants from the ocean can build up in our bodies and may affect the development of babies in the womb. There is no such problem with vegan omega 3 oil.

When is best to take omega 3?

Omega 3 supplements should ideally be taken with food. This will maximise the absorption into the body. If you struggle with sore joints, taking omega 3 in the evening could make it easier to get out of bed in the morning.

What is the best vegan omega 3 supplement?

The best vegan and vegetarian-friendly omega 3 supplement is Performance Lab omega 3. These high-quality capsules contain the right dose of omega 3 to supplement a fish-free diet while being easy to swallow and with no smell or aftertaste.

If you prefer chewable omega 3 gummies, then the bear-shaped Vegums have a fantastic orange taste. They’re sure to be a hit with children and are great for adults that may struggle with capsules too.

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