Want to learn more about Simris and our omegas? Whether you are an expert, have deep-dived the internet for information, or are just curious about omega-3s, you have come to the right place.
Q: What is different about Simris compared to other supplement brands?
A: Simris is not a "supplement brand", we are a wellness company devoted to the amazing powers of algae. We don’t just offer yet another product line based on sourced ingredients from various industrial suppliers. We grow algae in our own farm, and extract some of the most powerful nutrients made available to us by nature. What you will find is a small and exclusive line of carefully developed products, that are scientifically backed and really make a difference. All products are developed and designed by us, and formulated with unique ingredients from our own algae.
Q: What is so special about algae?
A: Our oceans are the cradle of all life. Microalgae are tiny little plants that grow in the oceans, and are some of the oldest organisms on our planet. As such, they directly connect us with the origin of life. They are the mother of all plants, and still today, over half of the oxygen we breathe comes from these microalgae. Microalgae are also the primary producers of many of the essential nutrients that are vital to all animals and humans, such as omega-3, vitamins, antioxidants, and other phytonutrients. These nutrients accumulate in the food chain, and end up in our diet. Obtaining our nutrients directly from these algae instead, means we can go back to their original and purest source in nature. They nourish our bodies from inside out, and thus support us in becoming our optimal selves. Healthy, happy, strong and truly alive.
Q: Where are you from?
A: We come from Hammenhög, a small village in the scenic Österlen region at the South coast of Sweden. Our Scandinavian heritage is important to us, and we proudly combine Swedish design and innovation at its finest.
Q: Why should I get omega-3 from algae and not from fish oil?
A: Algae is the original source of omega-3 in nature. Fish only obtain omega-3 through algae in their diet. By going straight to the source, we get a pure and pristine, natural omega-3 product that is completely plant-based. Omega-3 directly from algae is more sustainable for our oceans and the environment. It is also better for our health, since algae oils are free from heavy metals, PCB and dioxins which can be found in fish oils and fatty fish.
Q: What are the different types of omega-3?
A: There are three main types of omega-3 essential fatty acids that we need to get with our diet: EPA, DHA and ALA. EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) are two types of omega-3 with profound roles in our bodies. They are mainly found in marine organisms such as fish and seafood, which are our common dietary sources. They can also be obtained from supplements, such as fish oil, krill oil, or algae. The original source of omega-3 EPA and DHA in nature are marine microalgae. These algae are also the only plant-based (vegan) source of EPA and DHA. ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) is a simpler precursor to EPA and DHA. Contrary to EPA and DHA, ALA is produced by land-based plants and can be found in flaxseed oil, hemp seeds, chia, walnuts, etc. ALA needs to be converted to DHA and EPA in our bodies. However, this conversion is limited and dependent on both genetics and dietary status (see following answer).
Q: I am vegetarian/vegan. Why do I need omega-3 from algae when I eat flaxseed oil or chia seeds, that also contain plant-based omega-3?
A: The omega-3 found in land-based plants and sources such as flaxseed oil, chia seeds and similar, is ALA (alpha-linolenic acid). ALA is great for ensuring a healthy omega-6/omega-3 balance. However, the many important physiological functions in our bodies require omega-3 EPA and DHA. ALA is a precursor to EPA and DHA. Extensive research has shown that the conversion of ALA into the active omega-3 forms EPA and DHA is rather inefficient, and only around 5%. To ensure sufficient intake of these important fatty acids, vegetarians and vegans might want to consider taking a supplement with EPA and DHA from algae.
Q: What are the health benefits of omega-3 EPA and DHA?
A: Omega-3 EPA and DHA are involved in so many different parts of our bodies and physiological processes, that it is virtually impossible to list just a few specific benefits. They are simply essential for our health and well-being. They also are the ultimate beauty superfood, and an essential component in any performance-related diet. The profound health benefits of EPA and DHA have been shown in around 17 000 scientific studies, several of which are supported by national and international health agencies such as the FDA, WHO and EFSA. These include for example cardiovascular health (heart function, triglyceride levels, blood pressure), brain health, vision and joint health. It is important to notice that we believe in omega-3 EPA and DHA to support a healthy lifestyle and general wellbeing, and not to treat or cure any diseases.
Q: Why do pregnant and nursing women need omega-3 DHA?
A: Omega-3 DHA is one of the building blocks in our brains and in the retina of our eyes. During pregnancy, the mother needs to get sufficient omega-3 DHA in her diet, for the normal development of her child’s brain, eyes, and nervous system. During pregnancy, omega-3 DHA is passed on to the fetus through the placenta. During breastfeeding, DHA is supplied from the mother to her baby through the breast milk. Most infant formulas are fortified with omega-3 DHA, usually from algae.
Q: Is there a difference in absorption of omega-3 from fish compared to algae?
A: Omega-3 in krill oil and algae contain a higher amount of phospholipids compared to fish oil. Several scientific studies have shown that the uptake of omega-3 in phospholipid form might be more efficient than from the forms usually available in fish oils (triglycerides and ethyl esters). This is not surprising, since phospholipids are the most common form that EPA & DHA have in our own bodies. However, the science is not sufficiently validated yet. For now, it is safe to assume that omega-3 EPA and DHA from algae have at least equal (and possibly better) absorption than from fish oil.
Q: Do I really need supplements? Can’t I just eat a healthy, balanced diet instead?
A: People who eat a balanced diet with sufficient amounts of fatty fish do not need omega-3 supplements. However, with most modern diets it is hard to obtain the sufficient amounts of omega-3 that our bodies need. Considering their profound importance for our health and wellbeing, an omega- 3 supplement might therefore be a good choice to optimize your diet.
SIMRIS® ALGAE OMEGA-3
Q: What is the difference between the three products?
A: Simris® Algae Omega-3 and Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Athletes both contain omega-3 EPA and DHA. Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Mothers contains omega-3 DHA. Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Athletes also contains astaxanthin, a powerful antioxidant from algae.
Q: Are your products suitable for vegans?
A: Yes. All our products are 100% free from ingredients of animal origin. This includes our entire production chain, and every part of our business (our founder is vegan). Our products are registered with the Vegan Society.
Q: Are your products GMO-free?
A: All ingredients in our products are non-GMO. We only use natural algae, and no ‘industrially evolved’ strains as sometimes can be found in other products. We make a point of harnessing the amazing abundance and variety of algae in nature, rather than developing mutants in labs.
Q: Why do you use flaxseed oil in your softgels?
A: Flaxseed oil is a great source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), the third omega-3-fatty acid. By adding flaxseed oil to our EPA and DHA from algae, we get a full-spectrum product with an exceptionally high total amount of omega-3. The extra amount of omega-3 ALA supports a healthy omega- 6/omega-3 ratio. Due to its high omega-3 ALA content, we think that flaxseed oil is a superior choice to olive oil, canola, or sunflower oil found in other products.
Q: How long does a bottle last?
A: The recommend daily serving is two softgels. One bottle contains 60 softgels, and will last for a month.
Q: Why do the softgels have different colours?
A: The colour of the softgels varies depending on the different oils they are made from. The DHA oil in Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Mothers is golden yellow, while the EPA oil in Simris® Algae Omega-3 has a dark amber colour. Astaxanthin is crimson red, hence the Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Athletes capsules are dark red. These amazing colours are completely natural and come from the different algae oils.
Q: Why do the softgels smell?
A: We make a point of using oils in their natural form, to preserve all sensitive nutrients. We do not distill or deodorize our ingredients. For this reason, our capsules can have a characteristic ocean-like smell. No worries though – the smell is just superficial, and you will not get the infamous “fish burp” common with fish oil products.
Q: I’ve heard algae can contain high levels of iodine. How about your products?
A: All our omega-3 products are free from iodine.
Q: Are your products suitable for children?
A: All our omega-3 products are safe for children. Omega-3 DHA is particularly important for children, thus Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Mothers is a particularly good choice for kids as well. The softgels are too large for small children, but can be cut open to serve the oil on a spoon or mixed with food.
Q: What is astaxanthin and what is it good for?
A: Astaxanthin is a powerful, crimson red antioxidant from an algae called Haematococcus pluvialis. Its popular uses are to boost endurance and recovery in athletes, and to enhance skin quality and elasticity as a beauty superfood.
THE ALGAE FARM
Q: What kind of algae do you farm?
A: We grow a kind of microalgae called diatoms, which can be found in all oceans over the world. Unlike seaweed or kelp, these algae are so small that they are invisible to the naked eye. But under the microscope, they reveal their beautiful and intricate shape, similar to a moon crescent. They do not grow by getting bigger, but by dividing themselves into an ever growing number of cells. They are the natural producers of omega-3 EPA, which in the oceans accumulate in fatty fish (and fish oil) through the marine food chain.
Q: How do you farm the algae?
A: Our algae are grown in greenhouses, in intricate high-tech systems of shiny glass tubes reminiscent of a science fiction scenery. Just like any other plant, our algae need light to grow, and the glass tubes ensure that our algae are exposed to as much sunlight as possible. Here, they grow in our proprietary sea-water environment, and turn carbon dioxide into oxygen and omega-3. We harvest several times per week, and the algae are gently separated from the water. The water is then circulated back to the glass tubes, so that new algae can grow. Growing algae is one of the most environmentally friendly and efficient kinds of modern precision agriculture, while still being 100% natural, just as any other land-based crop.
Q: Are your products organic?
A: Our products are beyond organic and we pay meticulous attention to our ecological footprint. Our whole production process was built on principles as developed by nature, and to work in harmony with our environment. We grow our algae in closed systems, which eliminate the need for pesticides and protects them from environmental toxins and other contaminants. We use a solvent-free extraction process without the need for any chemicals that can leave residues. There are no available organic certifications yet for the algae that we grow, but most other ingredients in our products are certified organic.
Q: What are the softgels made of?
A: Our vegan softgels are 100% plant-based, made of certified non-GMO corn-starch.
Q: What is the origin of your ingredients?
A: The omega-3 EPA oil used in our products is made from algae grown at our own farm in Hammenhög, Sweden. Pending expansion of our farm, we currently import the DHA oil from Europe to blend with our oils. The flaxseed oil comes from our neighboring Gunnarshög farm, which is also located in Hammenhög. The natural astaxanthin used in Simris® Algae Omega-3 for Athletes comes from algae grown in Gustavsberg, outside of Stockholm, Sweden.
Q: Do you test the algae for harmful substances?
A: Our production facilities are HACCP-certified and we continuously test our algae and our oils for harmful substances. Every batch of omega-3 produced is tested before the products are released to consumers. The tests include a general food safety panel and various environmental toxins, but also substances on the WADA list of prohibited substances. This ensures that our products are safe for competitive athletes.