The Untold Truth Education Series
Colon In Crisis
Good Fats Prevent Chronic Disease
Copyright © 2005 Jane Oelke
Essential fatty acids are the number one recommendation for anyone
who has, or wants to prevent common chronic diseases today, such
diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. And they are very helpful in
improving immune system function to increase energy and reverse
some of the damage seen in diseases such as lupus, fibromyalgia,
and MS. What types of fat are in your diet?
If you have dry skin, stiffness, concentration problems, or hormonal
imbalances you may be lacking in a type of fat that is essential
to health. Essential fatty acids are those fats that the body needs;
yet cannot synthesize itself. Many types of fat are unhealthy fats,
yet some are beneficial and necessary. In fact, cutting all fat
from the diet is actually harmful to health.
Essential fatty acids are needed to metabolize other types of fats
that are not good for us. Saturated fat is a harmful fat that is
found in many types of red meat and dairy foods. Yet, the worse
types of fats are the partially hydrogenated oils found in snack
foods. These types of fats, found in most processed foods, are converted
to trans-fatty acids when heated, or oxidized. So when you make
boxed cakes or brownies you create trans fats when you bake these
partially hydrogenated oils that are included in the mix so that
the box can sit on your shelf indefinitely. These are the types
of fat that increase cholesterol in the arteries.
The good fats, called essential fatty acids, are important in many
metabolic processes, including energy production. Since the body
cannot produce them, they must be consumed in the diet to optimize
health. The essential fatty acids are the omega-3 (linoleic) and
omega-6 (linolenic) polyunsaturated fatty acids.
Every cell in the body is like a tiny factory, taking in raw materials
from the surrounding fluid and sending out various chemicals. Everything
going into or coming out of the cell has to pass through the cell's
membrane. The membrane depends on essential fatty acids to remain
fluid and flexible. Without them, the membrane becomes stiff and
unable to do its job.
Essential fatty acids are also important to bring vital oxygen to
muscle cells and they enable the cells to more easily absorb nutrients
needed for recuperation. In one study of 63 patients with fibromyalgia,
essential fatty acid supplementation resulted in a 74% reduction
in pain in patients after 1 month, and 85% after 3 months.
This is a list of the benefits realized by regular use of essential
· Improved cholesterol levels
· Lower blood
· Improved memory
· Increased circulation
· Reduced joint stiffness
· Reduced dryness of the skin
· Improved immune system function
· Less inflammation
· Balanced hormones
· Depression reduced.
As you can see, fatty acids are essential for metabolism and health.
is the richest vegetarian source of omega-3 fats. It is commonly
used in salads in place of other salad dressings. Flax oil shouldn't
be used for cooking, as high heat damages the fatty acids. Other
sources of omega-3 fatty acids are fish
oils from salmon, tuna, cod, and mackerel.
Omega-6 fatty acids are found in many vegetable oils such as borage,
flaxseed, walnut, soy, corn, sunflower, and are especially abundant
primrose oil. These omega-6 acids help to soften dry skin and
relax tense muscles.
Both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids need to be supplemented in
the diet. The ideal ratio of these fats is 2 parts omega-3 to 1
part omega-6 to reduce inflammation and pain, and to improve energy
metabolism. Increasing the amount of fish oils and flax oil will
help especially get the omega-3 fatty acids into the metabolism.
2000 mg. of flax oil is usually equivalent to 2 capsules or 1 tablespoon,
and is the recommended minimum per day.
The omega-3 and omega-6 need catalysts to be absorbed in the body.
These catalysts are vitamins B3
(niacin) and B6,
C, and the minerals magnesium
When there is a deficiency of these nutrients then the essential
fatty acids will not be absorbed well. Also when too many saturated
or trans fats are part of the normal diet then supplementation of
essential fatty acids is less effective.
A combination of essential fatty acids, minerals, enzymes, and antioxidants,
are all needed in your daily diet, or on whole food supplement form,
to make the metabolic changes that reverse many chronic disease
symptoms. Supplementing with sufficient amounts of omega-3 and omega-6
fatty acids in balance will help you absorb the other nutrients
you take in from your foods, and can make a great improvement in
your overall health and vitality.
Jane Oelke, N.D., Ph.D. is a Traditional Naturopath and Doctor of
Homeopathy. She is the author of “Natural Choices for Fibromyalgia”
and “Natural Choices for Attention Deficit Disorder.” She can be
contacted at DoctorOelke@aol.com
or through her website at http://www.NaturalChoicesForYou.com
Bifidophilus, Acidophilus, Probiotic