5

votes

Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 29, 2012 at 5:28 AM

Why speficially is the ratio between these two fatty acids important? Is minimizing omega 6 really just the key?

9f54852ea376e8e416356f547611e052

(2957)

on January 29, 2012
at 05:31 PM

This is the common wisdom in paleo circles, but myself and I believe OP is looking to find out what this is based on, what research or reasoning?

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 29, 2012
at 04:13 PM

The Perfect Health Diet is worth the read. Lots of helpful information.

56e59609362978a9dcb390fdeb45427f

(576)

on January 29, 2012
at 03:51 PM

Thanks for the answer, I follow a similar approach. I was thinking about ordering the Perfect Health Diet... worth the read?

9f54852ea376e8e416356f547611e052

(2957)

on January 29, 2012
at 10:18 AM

I'm glad this is raised. The ratio gets a lot of attention, although I haven't seen any research supporting its importance.

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4 Answers

6
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 29, 2012
at 09:01 AM

Great question.

I take the aproach of minimizing overall PUFAs from Omega 6 and 3. By keeping the Omega 6 low it makes it easier to come close with the Omega 3s. The other way around, increasing Omega 3 in an attempt to match an unbound Omega 6 intake, is not optimal.

Keeping the Omega 6 low makes it very simple to balance with Omega 3s with wild salmon/shellfish and pastured eggs. I am curently getting my Omega 6 and Omega 3 each day from gently cooked whole food sources. For example I soft boil or poach pastured eggs. I am also avoiding fructose from fruits or other sources while eating PUFAs.

A lot of PUFA answers can be found in the Perfect Health Diet. This answered a lot of my questions. Excessive Omega 6 is problematic in multiple ways. Omega 3 is seen as positive and anti-inflamatory however it is still easily oxidized. Fish oil is suspect in some studies. I see no need for it when taking the aproach of keeping Omega 6 low to begin with and eating some foods rich in Omega 3s. I do use cronometer, fitday and my new favorite paleo track to measure Omega 3 intake so that I do not over consume Omega 3 foods as it is easy for me to eat a lot of Wild Copper River Salmon when it is running. I only need a fraction of what I can eat to balance out the 6:3 ratio.

With regards to the Omega 6:3 ratio for our cell membranes need both to work properly. An over abundance of Omega 6 in adopose tissue is linked to shortened life...

This article http://ebm.rsmjournals.com/content/233/6/674.full contains information about the effects of various 6:3 ratios on disease and also the biological effects.

56e59609362978a9dcb390fdeb45427f

(576)

on January 29, 2012
at 03:51 PM

Thanks for the answer, I follow a similar approach. I was thinking about ordering the Perfect Health Diet... worth the read?

1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 29, 2012
at 04:13 PM

The Perfect Health Diet is worth the read. Lots of helpful information.

1
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 29, 2012
at 03:53 PM

There's a lot of fuss made over ratios and total amounts of PUFA. Story in a nutshell: the SAD has too much omega-6 and it is heavily oxidized (i.e. damaged). Minimizing damaged omega-6 sources is first and foremost. Eliminate processed seed oils. Next is supplementing your omega-3 levels to ensure something closer to low ratio, as opposed to high. Of least importance (in my opinion) is reducing total PUFA levels.

9f54852ea376e8e416356f547611e052

(2957)

on January 29, 2012
at 05:31 PM

This is the common wisdom in paleo circles, but myself and I believe OP is looking to find out what this is based on, what research or reasoning?

0
7a6529ea25b655132fe58d793f95547a

(2040)

on September 12, 2012
at 01:38 AM

Hey Ryan good question I've been looking for this too, I found some good information in Chris Masterjohn's Pufa report about AA and DHA the levels that actually cause deficiency which is really low and the ratio isn't really an issue when total pufa is low and your not going to high in 6. So you might want to check it out if you haven't already, it's 15 bucks but worth it I thought, kind of cleared up Ray Peat's views a little too. The only question I was left with was do liver and eggs contain too much AA to be used significantly over time?

0
246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on January 29, 2012
at 04:20 PM

If you are eating your main calorie sources from ruminant animals and vegetables (with a few exceptions), you will have low PUFA consumption, anyway... especially if it's grass-fed it's much ado about nothing.

But most of us don't just live on ruminant animals and we like to eat oily vegetables like avocados and olives, as well as seeds and nuts. This means we have to deal with some PUFA in our diet.

Personally, I try to get at the very least a 2:1 ratio before supplementation, which means on days where I eat too much O6 I might drink a little fish oil at the end of the day... but overall I'm experimenting with keeping my PUFA's lower than 30gm per day (15/15 O6/O3), my supplemental fat coming from Pastured butter and coconut fat.

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