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6:3 ratio. What is your goal?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created January 12, 2012 at 6:35 AM

6:3 ratio. What is your goal? How close do you get to your goal?

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 13, 2012
at 12:38 PM

Are studies that mega-dose fish oil to more or less standard diets relevant to somebody eating a nutrient-dense paleo diet? (In reference to your other question, Travis, posted a bit more there.)

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:40 AM

Awesome Dan!!!!

742ff8ba4ff55e84593ede14ac1c3cab

(3536)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:54 PM

Good point. Life isn't worth living if I can't have more than one avocado or only a small amount of olives.

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 12, 2012
at 07:15 PM

Would 3-6 ounces of wild salmon be a nice addition?

Medium avatar

(39821)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:56 PM

To be honest, I would be hesitant to even eat salmon/mackerel every day.

Medium avatar

(39821)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:53 PM

Evolutionarily novel fats of any kind are risky, whether they be dairy, trans fats or ridiculously concentrated PUFAs of any type. I touched on my concerns regarding fish oil specifically here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/66467/do-fish-oil-megadoses-increase-the-risk-of-heart-disease#axzz1jCAcR3AR

Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:51 PM

Do you have any links on that Travis, or at least a reason? There seems to be quite a lot of opinion suggesting that the ratio is more important than the absolute quantities. I'd almost call it a consensus in fact.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:48 PM

What issues do you find with fish oil? Just curious... my joints and skin thank me when I am diligent with my CLO...

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:44 PM

Thanks Travis!!! Found some great eggs. They are going to really help.

E57d8e182251b61ccc6ada197c359d7e

(623)

on January 12, 2012
at 05:38 PM

Don't care. I don't do the bad oils or processed food a majority of the time. I take fish oil(2-4 grams of EPA/DHA). I do eat conventional meat most of the time (cost to the family is too much for all grass fed). So i feel I am way better off then the average even though its probably higher then the "correct" ratio which no one really knows.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 12, 2012
at 05:17 PM

Good points. I'm sure there's a difference between corn oil full of oxidized PUFAs, lard with 10% PUFAs largely unoxidized, and a raw avocado with approx 10% PUFAs by calories.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on January 12, 2012
at 03:36 PM

My goal is not to worry about it.

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9 Answers

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Medium avatar

on January 12, 2012
at 06:27 PM

I don't think the ratio is important provided that you hit the minimum requirement, which is much lower than people think. I'm of the opinion that people should get their EFAs from yolks and meat and avoid all other sources of reactive fats. Naturally occurring, unprocessed PUFAs like those in nuts come with a lot of antioxidants in order that they remain stable, but I'm allergic to them, so I just skip it. Additionally, I think fish oil supplementation is terribly misguided and should be completely avoided.

3+ pastured yolks a day (for many reasons besides just the EFAs) and plenty of red meat from correctly-fed animals is ideal. Most paleos are making better choices than most SAD'ers, but there's still too much lard, fish oil, butter, cream (which are saturated at least but clearly hypercholesterolemic) etc.

Everything about paleo aside from increasing nutrient density and decreasing the reactivity of lipids is largely irrelevant/diminishing returns.

Medium avatar

(39821)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:56 PM

To be honest, I would be hesitant to even eat salmon/mackerel every day.

Medium avatar

(39821)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:53 PM

Evolutionarily novel fats of any kind are risky, whether they be dairy, trans fats or ridiculously concentrated PUFAs of any type. I touched on my concerns regarding fish oil specifically here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/66467/do-fish-oil-megadoses-increase-the-risk-of-heart-disease#axzz1jCAcR3AR

Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:51 PM

Do you have any links on that Travis, or at least a reason? There seems to be quite a lot of opinion suggesting that the ratio is more important than the absolute quantities. I'd almost call it a consensus in fact.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:48 PM

What issues do you find with fish oil? Just curious... my joints and skin thank me when I am diligent with my CLO...

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 12, 2012
at 07:15 PM

Would 3-6 ounces of wild salmon be a nice addition?

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 12, 2012
at 06:44 PM

Thanks Travis!!! Found some great eggs. They are going to really help.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 13, 2012
at 12:38 PM

Are studies that mega-dose fish oil to more or less standard diets relevant to somebody eating a nutrient-dense paleo diet? (In reference to your other question, Travis, posted a bit more there.)

5
24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on January 12, 2012
at 03:06 PM

I'm not convinced that the ratio or even absolute amounts have much to do with anything anymore. I just avoid veggie oils as a source of O6's. Given that olive oil and nut consumption is beneficial in epidemiologic studies, I tend to believe most of the issues we attribute to O6's are more due to chemical extraction and/or heat of industrial processing and hydrogenation/transfats than the fatty acids in and of themselves.

I am very wary of the estimates that our ancestors ate 1-2:1. What animal foods did we eat. There's no consensus here. Large ruminants? More "game" like deer? Small mammals? Birds? Fish? Eggs? And many paleo seem to at least accept ghee if not butter as an acceptable fat source. What of acceptable plant fats? CO is low PUFA but it's almost all O6, avocado has a poor ratio, as do olives, almost all other nuts are worse and yet some are healthy (walnuts, almonds).

I analyzed Mark Sisson's diet once from his sample menu. http://carbsanity.blogspot.com/2011/04/pufas-primal-blueprint-and-low-carb.html

His ratio (unsupplemented) is at least 3:1, and reached almost 12:1 with one variation on his sample menu he mentions.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 12, 2012
at 05:17 PM

Good points. I'm sure there's a difference between corn oil full of oxidized PUFAs, lard with 10% PUFAs largely unoxidized, and a raw avocado with approx 10% PUFAs by calories.

742ff8ba4ff55e84593ede14ac1c3cab

(3536)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:54 PM

Good point. Life isn't worth living if I can't have more than one avocado or only a small amount of olives.

4
D07a525f9021f8d72bf6aaa52893c795

(1011)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:38 AM

To have a meaningful goal, you need to get tested for your own ratio. I'm not convinced that a blood test would provide the correct results - ie you are only seeing a snapshot of lipid transport. Fat biopsy?

Remember too, it is not a good idea to have elevated PUFA, since their oxidation products will create AGEs. Elevated PUFA is more of an issue than fructose, because it is quite simply more chemically reactive. (n3 more than n6) Ideally, input should be no more than our own fat composition, generally around 10%. So, no more than 5% of calorific intake.

What's practical, then?

n6 is everywhere (nearly all nuts have a significant payload) - and I like Chris Kresser's down to earth approach, of paying attention to limiting n6 wherever possible, and eating oily fish at least 2/3 times per week.

This last recommendation is interesting too - PUFA do get stored, so longer term ratio is more important than daily.

I recall also a comment that PUFA half-life in the body is up to 2 years, so observable changes will be slow to manifest.

Sorry if I pose more questions, but hey, what are we here for?

1
A0f2f0f632d42215944a798486bddde1

(1377)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:26 AM

According to Cron I'm 1:1 (woohoo!). I eat around 1.5 lbs of salmon a week for O-3, and I don't eat anything high in O-6 (with the exception of a handful of almonds now and then). Overall PUFA comes out to around 10g/day (all 4-week averages).

I don't "watch" my O-ratios anymore - I did in the beginning, now it's just habit. So it's definitely possible to get to the 1:1 grail, but far be it from me to know if that's ideal. I haven't become superman because of it but it's nice to know that's not something I'm messing up.

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:40 AM

Awesome Dan!!!!

1
246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on January 12, 2012
at 05:43 PM

I would like to be 2:1, but usually end up at 4:1 or slightly better. This probably has a lot to do with my love of avocados and financial necessity to eat lots of chicken.

1
3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on January 12, 2012
at 05:02 PM

Good question...goal would be 2:1 or better, but not sure were I stand at the moment. I've reduced nuts, havent eaten chicken in a while, only have grass fed beef in the house, and eat 1-2 tins of sardines and 2-3 7oz servings of salmon a week. Think that puts me pretty close...at least these past couple weeks.

1
Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 12, 2012
at 02:45 PM

My goal? Depends what I end up at when I'm eating healthy.

1
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 12, 2012
at 02:11 PM

I'm at 3:1 to 4:1 without supplementation with total PUFAs around 4% of energy. I can get that to 1:1 with supplementation, but PUFAs go up to around 8% of total energy then. I actually feel best when supplementing with the 1:1 ratio and high PUFAs.

1
21b36b3de8ff31b0d41e7f0f4b5c1e03

(1688)

on January 12, 2012
at 01:37 PM

My goal is 2:1. Right now I am at 2.5:1 without supplementation.I eat some nuts but also quite a bit of fish.

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