The omega-6/omega-3 ratio is of importance!
Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes and Essential Fatty Acids
September 23, 2011 [epub]
This article has 33 references
KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE:
1) There is increasing evidence of a relationship between the changes in the omega-6/omega-3 “ratio in human and animal diets and the global epidemics of increases of metabolic complications as obesity, diabetes and neurological diseases.”
2) Primates, domestic and feral animals are all developing obesity, yet their fat intake has not increased in decades; “so other environmental causes are probably involved.”
3) The development of obesity worldwide in animals, human adults and human infants is not related to reduced physical activity and exercise.
4) “What really has changed during the last half of the 20th century is the quality of the fat, with an increased use of vegetable oils to exchange the dairy fat and reduce the intake of saturated fat.”
5) Vegetable oils have a very high content of omega-6 fatty acids, “resulting in a much higher ratio of omega-6/omega-3 in food and fodder globally.”
6) The omega-6/omega-3 ratio in the standard lab animal chow was:
6:1 in 1998
9:1 in 2004
12.5:1 in 2006
17:1 in 2011
7) “The high use of vegetable oils are spread worldwide by an increase of cultures of soy bean and corn.”
8) “One third of the world production of corn goes to human feeding and two thirds to animal feeding.”
9) “The extended use of fast food also increases the intake of omega-6, since oil is often added in the preparation of such food and can increase the ratio omega-6/omega-3 many hundred times compared to fresh food, like fish.”
10) “A high omega-6 intake favors transformation of inflammatory products, synthesized from arachidonic acid.”
11) Too high intake of omega-6 fatty acid “contributes to the inflammatory status characterizing many of the lifestyle diseases.”
12) “Arachidonic acid (AA) stimulates adipocyte transformation and higher percentage of AA has been found in adipose tissue biopsies from obese children compared to normal weight children of the same age.”
13) Providing a high dose of omega-3 fatty acids for 3 months to obese adolescents improves the omega-6/omega-3 ratio and improves arterial
distensibility and reduces inflammatory markers.
14) “In healthy 4-yrs-old a low omega-3 intake was associated with higher body weight, while a high fat intake, mainly consisting of saturated fat, was not.”
15) Animals fed a diet with an omega-6/omega-3 ratio of 9:1, as is common in the diets of the Western countries, developed adult obesity, high insulin levels, increased serum triglycerides, and increased high blood pressure.
16) Animals fed only saturated fat with no omega-6 essential fatty acids do not become insulin resistance and do not become obese. The problem is the omega-6 fatty acids.
17) Fatty acids influence gene expression related to lipid and glucose homeostasis. Omega-6 rich diets alter epigenetics in a way that makes both humans and animals obese. This mechanism of obesity has already been present in several generations.
18) “All results in humans and animals challenge the present recommendations, and indicate that we have to decrease the omega-6 intake instead of extending the use of extra supply of omega-3 fatty acids. That would involve a paradigm shift, and would make it possible to preserve multiplicity of life and nature. Humanity would survive by arresting the plundering of the oceans.”
19) We do not need so much of the essential fatty acids; we need to decrease omega-6 intake and balance the omega-6/omega-3 ratio.
Worldwide, all domesticated, farm-raised, and laboratory animals, as well as human adults and infants, are becoming obese and insulin resistant. The reason for this is the explosion of dietary omega-6 fatty acids (primarily from corn and soybeans) and the reduction of dietary saturated fat. The best strategy is balancing the omega-6/omega-3 ratio primarily by reducing the intake of omega-6 fatty acids.