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Vibrant health means you can live life to the fullest. Empower yourself with the steps I used to free my life of chronic disease and medications.

Reader Interactions

25 Comments

  1. Thanks for this article! I really wish I could balance out my omega-3s, but sadly, I’m highly allergic to all seafood and I have a moderate sensitivity to all eggs and dairy. So what can I eat besides ghee that will help balance out the ratio?

  2. Great explanation Lauren! It drives me crazy when flax seeds are promoted as a good source
    of omega 3s.
    I use ghee every day…I blend it into my coffee with coconut oil, and cook my pastured eggs in it. Thanks for spreading the word about ghee…I love that it is shelf stable and so delicious!

  3. I am so frustrated by all the articles only suggesting animal and dairy sources of nutrition without offering alternatives for those of us with allergies, sensitivities and intolerances. I am lactose intolerant and as much as I would love to eat yogurt and ghee, they both make me undeniably sick (believe me, I have tried). I am allergic to many nuts so they are generally out of the question as well. (Even coconut can inflame me!) Should I now be paranoid about consuming olive oil? My body does not digest and assimilate animal foods well at all so if I were to consume them it would have to be in minuscule amounts and very rarely. Hence, I am essentially a grain-free vegan.

    As emerging science on the human biome suggests, our bodies are much more complex than following a simple formulaic diet. Please….if you continue to write about nutritional health and you really want to help people (and not harm), please please please offer alternatives for people who cannot follow a simple “do this, not that” list. There are thousands and thousands of us. One size does not fit all. And yes, we are all responsible for our own health. But if you choose offer to help people along their journey, then please consider what works for one body does not work for another. Embracing our wide ranging complexity is critical to good health.

    • Sandra, I’m sorry to hear about your struggles! Have you looked into healing the gut to help with food intolerance…and a multitude of other maladies? I’ve done a series of seminars online on healing the gut. Very informational. Please check it out and see if there can be help for you in that way. A good place to start might be the SCDlifestyle. There’s help for you!

      • Sandra,

        If you aren’t already, avoid wheat , barley, rye, and oats (it has gluten too). Make sure everyone in the family is grain free and gluten free including the pets because of cross contamination. Also, it’s helpful to take probiotics and enzymes for the digestive issues.

    • Hi Sandra, not sure if you still see replies for this, but just wanted to share i was in the same boat as you!

      It turned out for me, the issue was healing the leaky gut. Why was i allergic, intolerant and unable to digest all those foods above. 2 parts of the story for me was emotional eating http://www.whywesuffer.com/understanding-anorexia/

      And also living in a terrible environmental, disconnected from life, causing the wrong genes to express. As well as using tip here at Empowered Sustenance, Dr Jack Kruse has something called a Leptin Reset that worked well for 6 weeks. Which doesn’t target food, but have proper circadian rhythms, something i had missed 🙂

      Good luck, and just know its not permanent what you have. Ive been there! Depends on your persistence to look at the problem differently

  4. Hi Lauren, I know how you research everything as I do. I took fish oil (and ate wild salmon) for years. I have now been convinced that fish oil is bad. Take a deep! look at brianpeskin.com’s site where he cites many research papers with proof. Some think he is, as a person, not factual, but one can read his response there also. I am interested to know what you think, cause its hard to refute these research findings.

    Also, coasttocoast.com radio is an alternative station that I think you might be interested in with reputable speakers from various fields in nutrition, health, world affairs, ufo’s, alternative energy sources, etc.

  5. Great article. Concise and clear. It should be noted for Sandra that you are here to inform and help people find a lifestyle that works for them not to tell them what they need to do. That is their personal responsibility. Your blog is an information source with material presented for consideration. You do a great job. Keep up the good work!

  6. What about macadamia oil for omega 3’s? Like ghee, it has a high ratio of omega 3:6.
    Flaxseeds & chia seeds, according to Ayurveda (reference Vaidya Mishra), are not recommended on a regular basis as they block the micro-channels of the body, by which organ systems communicate with each other. He says that in a few years time western nutrition will catch on to this, and these seeds will fall out of favour.
    Walnuts, according to one of my Ayurvedic teachers should be sauted with jaggery to get the nutrients out of them.
    Some of the world’s oldest medical systems have the knowledge of how to unlock nutrients from plant based foods. Maybe this is something to research further, Lauren

  7. I came across your article (http://empoweredsustenance.com/fat-malabsorption/) a few days ago about teaching the body to be able to better absorb fats (one of my big issues, according to biofeedback). I already ordered several of the recommended products and am starting to really put a focused effort toward that end.

    This article was helpful too…since I always heard walnut and flax were some of the best sources, but I didn’t really realize the various different types of omega3s. 😛 Now I do happen to love wild salmon and trout…but it’s so dang expensive! (I know I know, not being healthy is more expensive…) But again, I do have to focus on getting my body to actually absorb it cuz it seems to have a problem there.

    Anyways… something else I was exposed to recently and started taking is called Protandim. Have you heard of it yet? Or have any professional opinions about it?

    Here is one of the best explanations of what it does in terms of anti-inflammatory from the inside of the cell out…plus interesting comment he makes in there about how it blows fish oil supplements out of the water.
    https://youtu.be/LP7kxDufJHI

    Anyways, I’m just curious of your thoughts on it since you seem to have a lot of knowledge in this area.

    And to read more on protandim itself…here’s a link: http://goo.gl/QRPJed
    (And please understand I’m not trying to sell anything on your blog, I’m literally asking what you think of what it “says” it does…and whether the research is sound)

  8. This is a very informative article and I really appreciate you writing this to help other people in understanding how and what to look for in Omega 3’s and Omega 6’s.
    One thing that I think is a common misconception is that we must take more Omega 3’s in our diet alone and that’s not necessarily true. While it is very important to take in more Omega 3’s, it’s also important to reduce the amount of Omega 6’s in our diet, but not completely eliminate (as if that would even be possible). Reducing Omega 6’s is harder to do, because it’s in a lot of oils. Here are some oils that contain high amounts of Polyunsaturated Omega-6 fatty acids: Sunflower oil, Corn oil, Soybean Oil, and Cottonseed oil. If you are eating foods high in these oils, using them to supplement in cooking, or frying/cooking your foods in these oils chances are that you are eating too much of them. Try using flaxseed oil INSTEAD of these oils to reduce your omega-6 intake, note that I said “instead” which trumps the conversation about in addition to or to supplement your intake of Omega-3’s.
    While Flaxseed oil is incredibly full of Omega-3 fatty acids, it has far less Omega-6 fatty acids. Unfortunately, because our bodies have a difficult time converting the plant form of this Omega-3 fatty acid (ALA) into the animal form (because we are animals) only 5% gets converted from EPA into DHA. This is referring to flaxseeds, chia seeds, and hemp seeds and their content of Omega-3. However, it’s not to say that these foods aren’t healthy for us they just aren’t a very good representation of how to increase our intake of these Omega-3 fatty acids.
    If you lessen the amount of Omega-6’s in your diet and you are able to eat foods that contain high amounts of Omega-3’s like walnuts and flaxseeds, salmon and sardines, and various grass-fed animal meats and pasture-raised (flaxseed fed specifically) eggs then you will have many health benefits from eating the proper ratio of 1:1 to 5:1 of omega-6’s and 3’s.

    If you are a vegan and are having difficulty with consuming MORE omega-3’s, lessen your intake of omega-6’s by changing the types of oils you eat. Remember that Coconut oil is high in saturated fat and contains monounsaturated fats with little omega-6 fatty acids and canola oil does have about the same Omega-3’s as walnut oil but has three times that amount in Omega-6’s. Walnut oil has a lot of omega-6 fatty acid with the same amount of Omega-3’s as canola oil. Flaxseed oil has the same amount of Omega-6’s as Safflower oil but contains nearly 4 times the amount of Omega-6’s in Omega-3’s. So Flaxseed oil has a very high content of Omega-3, however this is also a very sensitive oil to cooking so it wouldn’t be as beneficial to replace it for a cooking oil. If you are using it on a salad it would be good as a dressing. Butter, Coconut oil, Ghee, are great replacements for cooking food in oil. Olive oil also has a lot of health benefits but should not be heated above medium heat and does contain some Omega-6, slightly less than flaxseed but very little Omega-3’s.

    This is why it’s so easy to raise the ratio of the 1:1 or 5:1 to 20:1 which creates the deficiency in the Omega-3’s.

    I believe this is a big proponent to why Lauren is so pro-vegan. It’s very hard to obtain a lot of the health benefits of nutrients, minerals, and vitamins from plants alone and sometimes eating plants alone can create more health issues when there is a shortage of certain amino acids and fatty acids which primarily can be resolved by upping the intake of these animal derived essential lipids into our diet.

    While it’s not impossible, it does require more work in being a vegan and a lot more responsibility. e.g., it’s easier to increase the amount of Omega-3’s on a diet rich in animal proteins than it is in a vegan diet because there is a lot more responsibility involved. Again, not impossible but it does take effort to make sure your foods aren’t rich in these Omega-6 fatty acids.

  9. thank you for this article and your many others on important topics.

    I find it sad that when discussing Omega 3s, the paleo community seems to be blind to the benefits of Camelina Oil. Read more at Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camelina_sativa. “The crop is now being researched due to its exceptionally high levels (up to 45%) of omega-3 fatty acids, which is uncommon in vegetable sources. Seeds contain 38 to 43% oil and 27 to 32% protein.[9] Over 50% of the fatty acids in cold-pressed camelina oil are polyunsaturated. The oil is also very rich in natural antioxidants, such as tocopherols, making this highly stable oil very resistant to oxidation and rancidity. It has 1–3% erucic acid. The vitamin E content of camelina oil is approximately 110 mg/100 g. It is well suited for use as a cooking oil. It has an almond-like flavor and aroma.”

    We have been using organic Camelina Oil sourced locally from Hummingbird wholesale for several years.

    Another thing you didn’t mention is that Flax products are highly estrogenic, causing unnatural reactions in many women.

  10. Thanks for this – I have been eating lots of cracked chia seeds for omega 3 and have found they have been super helpful – what are you thoughts on chia seeds? You may not tolerate them well in your healing diet but i am a fan of chia porridge! But your right can’t imagine you can’t trump good old healthy fish:)

  11. I would just like to say I find your information to be, generally, very useful but this one on the omega3 & 6 does not help me at all. I am intolerant to ALL fish & seafood. So where does that leave me?

  12. Lauren, well written article and some good points. One thing that most people don’t talk about though is that even though standard American diet is consuming 20:1 omega-6 to omega-3 the average blood/cell levels are still in the 4 to 1 range for the average American. As your article suggests the benefits are from incorporating the omega-3s into the cells not just from consuming them. Unfortunately every is different when it comes to absorption and incorporation.

  13. Thanks Lauren for the information. I found it really useful. Had a few opps… moments whilst reading this article.

    I’ve been giving my 4 year old Eskimo little cubs fish oil every day but running out of it so I’ll give it a break for a while. Thank God she does eat salmon sometimes, despite being a fussy eater.

    I’ve been consuming organic flaxseed in my porridge for ages but I will dump that now as someone in a post mentioned that it is estrogenic. I was consuming Chia but I didn’t get on with it now I know why.

    I’m considering trying out Walnuts again but not sure if I’ll react to this if it’s histamine inducing as I’’ve developed food allergies.

    I am also taking the Renew Life critical omega fish oil but will consider a high vitamin cod liver oil instead as I don’t like fish except cod.

    I did try the Green Pastures Blue Ice Fermented Cod liver oil but I didn’t get on with it at all and it gave me a bad stomach ache. I read on some reviews that it’s not stable.

    http://www.seventhwaveuk.com/102-green-pastures-cod-liver-oil-fermented-liquid.html

    Also got some high vitamin butter oil but didn’t get on with it either so my husband consumed both bottles.

    http://www.seventhwaveuk.com/106-x-factor-gold-high-vitamin-butter-oil.html

    Is this just Ghee in fancy packaging????

    After reading Lauren’s article, I have been taking half a teaspoon of Fushi grass fed Organic Ghee but will up this amount to a teaspoon (even though it suggests you can take a tablespoon daily).

    ps. not related to the article but I’ve started taking Altrient C and had amazing results.

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Lauren Geertsen, NTP

I’m an author, entrepreneur, and nutritional therapy practitioner (NTP). I began this website at 19, to share the steps that freed my life of chronic disease and medication. Now, Empowered Sustenance has reached 30 million readers with healthy recipes and holistic resources.

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