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Cod liver oil, fish oil and Omega 3 - page 2

(continued from page 1)

Code liver oil and its vitamin D for strong bone development

There are 2 major factors known to contribute to osteoporosis - peak bone mass during childhood and adolescence, and the rate of bone loss which occurs during aging.

Researchers found that hypovitaminosis D - deficiency in vitamin D - in adolescents has harmful effects on bone mineral growth, particularly at the lumbar spine, during a period of development when peak bone mass should be reached (1).
cod liver oil and bones

They say that vitamin D supplements should be considered during the pre-puberty and puberty years which are a crucial stage in preventing osteoporosis later on in life.

Studies have found that intake of vitamin D from the diet is often not high enough to maintain optimal vitamin D levels during the winter months for many people(1). This points to the importance of making certain that your child gets enough vitamin D in the winter. If you live in the United States, you can be virtually certain that your child is not getting enough vitamin D from the sun in the winter months.

To solve this problem, you can give them cod liver oil as it has the type of vitamin D which can safely increase the vitamin D level to one that will help build strong bones in your child’s body.

Omega 3 helps prevent diabetes

3 months of daily supplementation with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) - found in cod liver oil and plain fish oil - produced a 'clinically significant' improvement in insulin sensitivity in overweight study participants, according to nutrition researcher Dr. Yvonne Denkins, with the Pennington Biomedical Research Institute(2).

More than 9 out of 10 diabetics have the "type 2" form of the disease, in which the body's gradual failure to respond to insulin can cause blood sugar levels to rise to dangerous levels.
fish oil and diabetes

In the study, researchers had 12 overweight women and men, aged 40 to 70, consume Omega 3s at breakfast for 12 weeks. While none of the study participants had full-blown diabetes, they all suffered from insulin resistance - a pre-diabetic condition in which the body fails to efficiently respond to insulin.

Using blood tests done at the start and at the end of the study(3), the researchers measured changes in each person's insulin resistance.

They saw a change in insulin sensitivity after 12 weeks of Omega 3 supplementation. 70% of the study participants showed an improvement in insulin-related function, and in 50% it was a 'clinically significant' improvement.

The dose of DHA used in this study was 1.2 grams. Since most capsules contain 180 mg of EPA and 120 mg of DHA, this would mean 15 regular fish oil capsules a day.

I recommend a specific weight formula of one 180 /120 mg Omega 3 capsule for every 10 pounds of body weight. So for the average 150 pound person, 15 capsules a day is appropriate, preferably in 2 equal doses.

However, many diabetics are very heavy. So a 260 pound person would require 26 fish oil capsules a day. (Please note that this is for plain Omega 3 fish oil, not for cod liver oil, because of cod liver's oil vitamin D content! For the dosage for cod liver oil, see earlier in this page) It will also take some time for the fish oil to work. It is reasonable to expect a 3-month lag time to response.

Other studies have shown that fish oil might help protect against diabetes. There were epidemiological studies done on the Greenland Eskimos, a population which eats mainly whale blubber.

These are people who are overweight, who should be diabetic and have heart disease, but they don't. The scientists who studied them thought it was probably because of their diet, and they found that it was the omega-3s.


Preserving your cod liver oil and fish oil

The cod liver oil does not have to be consumed with a spoon, it is far better tolerated if it is poured over vegetables, just as you would use olive oil as a salad dressing.

The key to remember here is that cod liver oil is very perishable and should not be cooked with or poured over hot food.
cod liver oil jar

When you take cod liver oil or fish oil supplements in the doses I recommend please be sure to take 1 vitamin E 400 unit supplement per day as this will help to protect the fat from oxidation. This is less of an issue with the cod liver oil as the vitamin D itself is a very potent anti-oxidant.

Cod liver oil and fish oil processing

Most of the fish oil sold in the United States as dietary supplements come from Anchovies and Sardines caught off the coast of South America. Cod liver oil comes primarily from Nordic waters.

All cod liver oil and fish oil for dietary supplements is refined to a greater or lesser degree. Refining requires heat under vacuum, bleaching clays, deodorization (molecular distillation) and winterization. We cannot classify any of these processes as gentle or natural, however they are necessary in order to produce a safe and pure product for human consumption.

Molecular distillation is the only method currently which can remove metals, PCBs and other toxins to below detectable levels for human consumption. Cod liver oil and fish oil produced using molecular distillation is more expensive but it is a better product.

I spend a lot of time researching the best prices for supplements on the internet, and in my opinion the best prices for high quality cod liver oil are hereicon. The best prices for high quality Omega 3 fish oil are hereicon. You may also like Puritan Pride's special "Buy 1 Get 2 FREE" promotions on cod liver oil and fish oil.




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(1) American Journal Clinical Nutrition December 2002 76:1446-1453

(2) Annual Experimental Biology 2002 Conference New Orleans, LA April 21, 2002



Disclaimer: Throughout this website, statements are made pertaining to the properties and/or functions of food and/or nutritional products. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and these materials and products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

2002 Healing Daily