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Is there a limit of how low to go with omega 6 fats intake?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 29, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Being paleo for over 3 years I have progressively worked towards reducing omega 6 fat intake and improving the 6:3 ratio. At the same time I have developed a dermal rash I can not get rid of. Might there be a small amount of omega 6 fats we should be eating required for healthy skin as the summary of the research indicates? If so that would be the right amount and what would be the best sources?

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on August 31, 2013
at 06:44 AM

pumpkin seed (oil) is good for the prostate as well

C8586fa2188272d5474d22aa8a500619

(358)

on August 31, 2013
at 05:03 AM

I will try this, adding clean omega 6 to my diet in form of nuts and seeds.

C8586fa2188272d5474d22aa8a500619

(358)

on August 31, 2013
at 05:02 AM

I think this is my case too. I am starting to eat sunfloweer, pine, pumpkin, sesame seeds and various nuts.

782d92f4127823bdfb2ddfcbcf961d0e

(5231)

on August 29, 2013
at 07:13 PM

Hmmm...I thought that coconut oil had negligible omega fats because it is nearly all saturated.

C8586fa2188272d5474d22aa8a500619

(358)

on August 29, 2013
at 06:21 PM

Actually I avoided pork and chicken because of the O6 content. O6 in butter and ghee is absolutely negligable. so I guess it IS possible to go extremly low.

3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on August 29, 2013
at 04:56 PM

well I assume that the physical limit approaches 0....

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6 Answers

1
543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on August 30, 2013
at 04:58 AM

I came to same conclusion a while back (ie. you Can go too low with n6).

I went over board in reducing omega-6's & my skin got drier & drier (& flakier).
I have a feeling that this is only an issue for a minority of people.
But, perhaps for people who have always had skin on the dry side, going too low n6 is going to make things worse.
If your skin has a tendency to be 'too' oily, than going very low n6 may help (just a guess on my part).

If i notice my skin getting too dry now, it likely means that i have been slack with my diet.
If i want to fix reasonably quickly, then i will take 2 to 3 grams of evening primrose oil a day for a bit, which is about 1.5g to 2.25g linoleic acid (n6) and 200mg to 300mg gamma linolenic acid/GLA (n6) per day. The epo seems to work quite quickly for me.

Flax oil also seems to work for me in the longer term. Flax is is mainly n3 (~57% alpha linolenic acid), but i find it a good way to dose with minimal n6 as well (~15% linoleic acid).
I experimented with fish oils a while back (n3 epa/dha), but these did nothing for me, which makes me think the flax oil works (for me) due to the linoleic or alpha linolenic acids or both.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on August 31, 2013
at 06:44 AM

pumpkin seed (oil) is good for the prostate as well

C8586fa2188272d5474d22aa8a500619

(358)

on August 31, 2013
at 05:02 AM

I think this is my case too. I am starting to eat sunfloweer, pine, pumpkin, sesame seeds and various nuts.

1
72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on August 29, 2013
at 04:46 PM

A small amount of omega-6 is definitely necessary, but it's very small... for most people. Not everyone has the same needs. Why not do an experiment? Replace some of the fat in your diet with a couple of servings of nuts per day and you'll drastically increase your omega-6 intake. It's unlikely to hurt you, and you'll find out whether it makes your skin better.

C8586fa2188272d5474d22aa8a500619

(358)

on August 31, 2013
at 05:03 AM

I will try this, adding clean omega 6 to my diet in form of nuts and seeds.

1
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on August 29, 2013
at 01:03 PM

You'd be hardpressed to be omega-6 deficient. Are you 1) Ray Peat'ing it (i.e. no PUFAs, lots of sugar) 2) eating nothing but coconut oil as your fat source, 3) supplementing with huge amounts of fish oil excluding all other fats?

0
56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on August 29, 2013
at 08:10 PM

yes, 3% is small. It is also 1 gram out of 30 grams.

0
56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on August 29, 2013
at 06:39 PM

Some numbers: healthy vegetable fats O6/O3 content (% of total fat) -> coconut is 3/0%, avocado is 14/1%, olive and palm oils are 8/1%.

Pastured pork, chicken and eggs (who still eat grains) have ratios of order 4-6, as do cows partially fed grains. Just eating hay and silage, a grain-free diet, instead of fresh grass, takes cheese and other dairy from about 1 to about 4, just due to the fermentation of O3 fats during storage of silage and hay.

Even grass fed cows will have ratios between 1 and 4, depending on which part of the country they come from. Most vegetables, including virtually all root crops, have ratios of 4-10. Nuts have ratios well above 10. It is virtually impossible to even get a ratio of 1 frankly, unless you severely restrict your diet to irish butter, northern beef, and fish. I probably get no better than 4, after I include 1 tablespoon of CLO a day.

My problem are pastured chickens, lots of root crops, one nut bar a day, coconut and olive oil, and pastured eggs. If I had an avocado tree, it would blow completely off course. Indeed if there is one thing that I do not like about the high fat diets some people here pursue, is that they probably ingest 20-40 grams of O6 a day, when a the RDA is likely of order one gram.

782d92f4127823bdfb2ddfcbcf961d0e

(5231)

on August 29, 2013
at 07:13 PM

Hmmm...I thought that coconut oil had negligible omega fats because it is nearly all saturated.

0
C45d7e96acd83d3a6f58193dbc140e86

on August 29, 2013
at 12:55 PM

First off, nearly all fat sources are a blend of multiple types of fatty acids. As such, unless you are not eating fat at all, you will get enough Omega-6 from that, as all animal fats have some in it. So if you are worrying about getting too little, don't. Beef, lamb, chicken, pork, fish, butter, ghee etc all contain a certain amount of Omega-6.

C8586fa2188272d5474d22aa8a500619

(358)

on August 29, 2013
at 06:21 PM

Actually I avoided pork and chicken because of the O6 content. O6 in butter and ghee is absolutely negligable. so I guess it IS possible to go extremly low.

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