I recently read a paper on the benefits of high omega-3 fatty acids in your blood and the results were astounding.
It’s a pre-print from researchers out of the University of Georgia and it suggests that having a higher ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in the blood is linked to an increased risk of all-cause mortality, cancer mortality, and cardiovascular mortality. The researchers conducted a meta-analysis of 17 studies involving over 42,000 participants to investigate the relationship between the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids and mortality. The paper highlights the importance of maintaining a balanced ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids for overall health and longevity.
Other health benefits associated with more balanced of omega-3 fatty acids in the blood include:
- Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease: Omega-3 fatty acids can help lower triglycerides, reduce blood pressure, and decrease inflammation, which can all contribute to a lower risk of heart disease.
- Improved brain function: Omega-3 fatty acids are important for brain development and function. Studies have suggested that they may improve cognitive function and help prevent age-related cognitive decline.
- Reduced inflammation: Chronic inflammation is linked to a range of health problems, including autoimmune diseases and cancer. Omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation in the body.
- Better joint health: Omega-3 fatty acids may help reduce joint pain and stiffness in people with rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory joint conditions.
- Improved mood: Omega-3 fatty acids may help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety by increasing levels of certain neurotransmitters in the brain.
So, how do you achieve a low omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio? I try and maximize the amount of omega-3s in my diet. I take 4 grams (4 pills) of Viva Naturals fish oil daily. It’s a good brand that is more affordable than most. I also do this by eating this brand of sardines weekly (fix it like you would tuna fish). I get them in salt water, not oil since I don't know the source of the oil (and this is the brand Joe Mercola uses). Beef that is grass-fed and grass-finished is also high in omega-3s.
I also minimize the amount of omega-6 fatty acids in my diet. If you eat out, you’re most likely getting a massive amount of omega-6 fatty acids in your meal. Conventional grain-fed beef is high in omega-6. So, I try and not eat out much. Also, I avoid all things with generic “vegetable oil” in them. This also includes soybean oil and canola oil. I only cook with organic coconut oil, high in omega-3s. This also means avoiding products with corn, which is in almost everything that is processed.
Today, the typical omega 6 to omega 3 ratio is around 16:1. A better ratio to shoot for are the pre-industrial population levels of 4:1 (hunter-gatherers) or 1:4 (people eating mostly wild-caught fish).
Overall, maintaining high levels of omega-3 fatty acids in the blood can help improve overall health and reduce the risk of various chronic diseases.