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Published by: Samuel on Aug 21, 2011
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Understanding Fats
Where do we start?
To understand how fats affect health, we must begin by realizing that there are two opposite stories about fats. There are fats that kill, which we should avoid. And there are fats that heal that we must obtain from our food. Much has been said about the fats that kill. They are associated with deaths from cardiovascular disease (43%), cancer (23%), diabetes (2%), and other degenerative diseases that kill 68% of Western populations. Only a 100 years ago, this was rare indicating that these deaths are from diseases of lifestyle, not genetics. The problem with our focus on the killer fats is that it is an inadequate focus. If we were to remove all bad fats from our diet, and do it perfectly (100%) we would still die if we did not bring in and optimize the fats that heal. This is because we cannot live without the fats that heal, and removing the bad fats makes no guarantee of obtaining the good ones. The story of the fats that heal, the good fats, the essential fatty acids is therefore the more interesting and important story by far. To bring the neglected good fats into our diet, we must identify their sources, their functions, and the signs of their deficiency.

What are the good (essential) fats?
Certain fats are defined as 'essential' because: 1. The body cannot make them; 2. They are required for normal cell, tissue, gland, and organ function, for

derivatives. What are bad (toxic) fats? . One is the omega 3 (n-3) EFA. 5. Their absence from the diet will eventually kill. and for life. and from two n-6 derivatives called DGLA and AA. 4. can lead to death. eggs. the body makes hormone-like series 1 and series 2 eicosanoids. Eicosanoids regulate many functions in all tissues on a moment-to-moment basis. AA is the major brain n-6. and dairy products. Return of essential fatty acids to a deficient diet reverses the symptoms of deficiency and results in a return to health. 3. as well as in fish). the omega 6 (n-6) EFA. is known as linoleic acid. from conception until death. The other. Deficiency results in progressive deterioration. The best known derivatives of n-3 are EPA and DHA. They can come only from fats (hence fat-free diets cannot supply them). which are made by the body and are also found in high fat. They must be provided from outside the body. From the n-3 derivative called EPA. Derivatives of n-6 include GLA (found in evening primrose oil). A more comprehensive look at EFAs. and AA (found in meat. respectively. and eicosanoids is found on page 20 of Fats That Heal Fats That Kill. According to the above definition of essential. DGLA (found in mother's milk). The body converts the n-3 and n-6 EFAs into several n-3 and n-6 derivatives with important functions in the body. there are only two essential fats (technically called essential fatty acids or EFAs). the body makes hormone-like series 3 eicosanoids. DHA is the major brain n-3. called alpha-linolenic acid. cold water fish. through food or supplements. 6. 7.health.

What are the functions of essential fatty acids? Essential fatty acids have many functions throughout the body. rather than for long shelf life. EFAs and the oils containing them cannot retain the health benefits that they confer when treated with care. does it own unique kinds of damage. Light produces thousands of free radicals in oils.Most of the health problems usually blamed on fats should be blamed on the destructive processing of fats. EFAs are sensitive to destruction by light. normally used to obtain longer shelf life and greater convenience for manufacturers and consumers. Because of their sensitivity. filtered. Exposure of oil to air or oxygen produces oxidation and rancidity with its unpleasant odor. If this protection is not given. packaged. EFA-rich oils should be made with health in mind. and heat. oils and EFAs are damaged. These three destructive influences produce molecules that have been changed from natural and healthy to unnatural and toxic. When this care is not taken. They are . EFAs need to be pressed. air (oxygen). They need protection from light. and leads to random changes in oil molecules. and heat. and at high temperatures. and then they damage our health. stored and used with care. Heat speeds the damage done by light and oxygen. air.

Athletes could exercise longer before reaching exhaustion. EFAs are required for healthy skin and hair. Energy improvement is also seen in non-athletes and older people. increased intelligence. Among these are elevated mood. recovered more quickly from fatigue. healed quicker from injuries. EFAs can decrease hallucinations in schizophrenics. could exercise more often without over-training. EFAs are also required for vision. The EFA blend also improves mental stamina. In our work with the blended oil. and Nails. better mental processing. improve symptoms in bipolar and obsessivecompulsive disorder. lifted depression. built muscle faster. N-3 can decrease most CVD risk factors. elevate mood. Cancer. less hyperactivity. we showed that within one month of giving athletes one tablespoon per 50 pounds of body weight per day of an oil blend with an n-3: n-6 ratio of 2:1. we have seen consistent improvements in brain function. and improved motor coordination. and research with EFAs from other sources has also shown brain benefits. In a study with athletes in Denmark. Hair. and had less joint pain. and are required for normal nail growth. better focus. faster learning. lift depression. Among the mentally ill. • Skin. Cardiovascular Disease (CVD). • • . better concentration. and improve brain function in Alzheimer's disease and autism. better handling of stress. They moisturize skin and prevent dryness. N-3 EFAs lower cancer risk.involved in: • Energy production. increased calmness. stamina increased by up to 40 or even 60%. • Brain Function.

• • • . Injury. N-3 improve bone mineral retention. Digestion. Sleep. They work best if digestive enzymes rich in protein-digesting protease are also used. and losing their temper less often. Saturated. yet the effects of hormones remain normal. N-3 make diabetics more insulin-sensitive. and trans. and shift the body from burning glucose to burning fats. thereby inhibiting the development of osteoporosis. Hormones. fibrinogen. People report feeling calmer. Starch can also lead to overweight. EFAs are required for insulin function. • • Bone Minerals. Organs. Weight Management. EFAs improve hormone functions. Digestive enzymes are also helpful. • • Diabetes. Stress. decrease gut inflammation. N-3 also keep the inside of our arteries smooth. N-3 reduce inflammation. by optimizing serotonin production. enzymes are also helpful. and decrease 'leaky gut' that can lead to allergies. EFAs are required for liver and kidney function. EFAs reduce symptoms of allergies. blood pressure. platelet stickiness.including high triglycerides (blood fats). N-6 slightly and n-3 more effectively help reduce fat production in the body. monounsaturated. improve response to stress. Autoimmune Conditions. Hormone levels may decrease. dealing with stressful situations more calmly. getting stressed less easily. EFAs improve gut integrity.fatty acids do not help to manage weight. EFAs improve sleep in some people. N-3 dampen the over-response of the immune system in autoimmune conditions. EFAs thereby ease the work load of glands. Sugar triggers increased fat production in the body. N-3 and n-6 keep the heart beat regular. Inflammation. Allergies. and lipoprotein(a). Again. EFAs speed the healing of • • • • • injuries. They also increase fat burning and heat production in the body. EFAs.

inflammation. or organ can function normally without them. Here is a longer list: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Dry skin Constipation Low energy levels Brittle hair and hair loss Poor nail growth Deterioration of liver and kidneys Behavioral changes due to brain deterioration Glands dry up Immune system deteriorates. EFAs are required for sperm formation. and pregnancy. the female cycle. and increased cancer Digestion problems. gland.• Reproduction. No cell. tissue. increased symptoms Decreased lung function Decreased tissue oxidation . What happens when we don't get enough good fats? The short answer is: Every part of the body gradually deteriorates and falls apart. poorer wound healing. resulting in more infections. autoimmune conditions Bone mineral loss Reproductive failure: sterility in males and miscarriage in females Retarded growth of children Tingling in arms and legs due to nerve deterioration Vision and learning problems Insulin resistance Increased risk of overweight Increased cancer risk Increased cardiovascular risk Decreased ability to cope with stress In mental illness. allergies. bloating.

This is because one end of the lecithin molecule is water-soluble while the other is oil-soluble. LDL. They are found in chylomicrons. VLDL. HDL and the other carriers.How does the body distribute essential fatty acids? Essential fatty acids are distributed through the same vehicles that carry cholesterol throughout the body. Fat is carried in a watery system (our blood stream) by adding lecithin. . or not sleeping because of too much energy because you took it too close to bedtime. Lecithin allows oil and water. Proteins and minerals are also involved as carriers in the transport of fatty acids throughout the body. which normally don't mix. IDL. to mix quite readily. In fact. It therefore forms an interface between water and oil. Other than exceeding liver capacity and getting nauseous. it doesn't appear so. a molecule of essential fat has to be hitched to a molecule of cholesterol to transport cholesterol in these vehicles. Can you get too much essential fat? When you get more than 12-15% of total calories as n-3s. there is a fat "burn-off" based on increased metabolic rate.

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