I received an advertising flyer from Consumer Reports the other day. It was promoting their “Expert * Independent * Nonprofit” newsletter onHealth. On the front cover of the colorful flyer in lower right hand corner was a box with a nice picture of a flask of oil. Here’s what it said:
Olive Oil is the best choice for a healthy heart, right? Then in bold print: WRONG. Then, I kid you not, it continued with this “analysis.” Olive oil is fine if you like the taste, but it’s not the best oil for your health. That’s because olive oil is low in omega-6. Better-for-you fats, that are rich in omega-6's include canola, corn, soybean and sunflower oil.
I’m not joking! My most recent posts on this blog emphasized how important the one to one balance of omega-6s to omega-3s is in the membranes of all cells for optimal body function. I have explained that whenever knowledgeable nutritional scientists refer to the omega-3 deficiency, they do so based on its ratio to the omega-6s. Most Americans have horrible ratios, somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 to one omega-6s to omega-3s. That’s because we have a grain-base food system and grains are deficient in omega-3. Now here comes Consumer Reports telling all Americans, in effect, they need more Omega-6s!
Here’s a table of popular oils.
1 Oz. Serv. 1 Oz. Serv. 1 Oz. Serv.
Omega-6 Omega-3 Mg of Omega-3
Oils Mg Mg Surplus/Deficit
Canola Oil 5,221.0 2,559.0 -2,662.0
Coconut Oil 504.0 0.0 -504.0
Corn Oil 14,983.0 325.0 -14,658.0
Fish oil (cod liver) 262.0 5,526.0 +5,264.0
Fish oil (herring) 322.0 3,321.0 +2,999.0
Fish oil (sardine) 564.0 6,746.0 +6,182.0
Fish oil (salmon) 432.0 9,887.0 +9,455.0
Olive Oil 2,734.0 213.0 -2,521.0
Palm Oil 2,548.0 56.0 -2,492.0
Peanut Oil 8,961.0 0.0 -8,961.0
Soybean Oil 14,118.0 1,901.0 -12,217.0
Sunflower, high oleic (70%+) 1,010.0 53.8 -956.2
Sunflower, linoleic (65%) 18,397.0 0.0 -18,397.0
Walnut Oil 14,810.0 2,912.0 -11,898.0
One of the goals for optimizing health is to achieve a one-to-one balance by weight of the essential fatty acids (EFAs which are primarily the omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids) in our diet. If our diet is properly balanced the membranes of the cells in our bodies will end up with the same balance. But how can we do that with canola, corn, soybean, and sunflower oils? It’s impossible. That’s especially true since our bodies take in EFAs in a way that magnifies any imbalance. In other words, if the diet is balanced eight to one, the cells will end up maybe 12 to one.
Consumer Reports did not differentiate between the “high oleic” Sunflower oil and the “linoleic” oil. There is a huge difference. From their recommendation I assume they prefer the “linoleic” oil because it is so incredibly high in Omega-6. So, if you only consume one ounce per day of just one of their recommended oils, here is the milligrams of Omega-6 in excess of Omega-3 that you would consume.
Canola Oil 2,662.0
Corn Oil 14,658.0
Soybean Oil 12,217.0
Sunflower, linoleic (65%) 18,397.0
None of the fundamental foods in the daily diet of man can provide enough milligrams of omega-3s to offset 18,397 mg of omega-6 per day. Maybe if one ate nothing but seafood for every meal they could balance out the 2,662 mg of omega-6s. But how many people are willing to do that?
What is most often missed by the mainstream, or should I say what is always missed by the mainstream, is that the EFAs must have a certain balance in order for bodies to function properly. An imbalance is associated with nearly, if not every, chronic disease. Unfortunately Consumer Report’s onHealth is serving up the same old improper message that has already brainwashed the masses and our job of communicating the truth becomes ever more difficult. But that’s human nature. The mob is slow to change, especially when it comes to our food.
The foods we eat and how they are prepared is at the heart of our culture. That’s why suggesting change, even it’s to save lives, is so difficult. Only individuals with strong wills can step away from the crowd and change to the Real Diet of Man. When they do, their EFAs will come into perfect balance. Their weight will plunge if they are overweight. They will subdue and even cure their many chronic diseases which today have become so commonplace folks refer to them as epidemics rather than just incidences. The acceptance of getting sick is so ingrained now people actually believe that getting sick is a natural occurrence of aging.
Oh, you ask, “Which oils are best?” Well, it’s in the balance. And for that one must think in terms of the daily diet. Overall, everyday one’s intake of omega-6s and omega-3s must be in balance by weight. So that means one must eat foods that are balanced because the alternative is to supplement. When someone supplements with oils high in omega-3s to offset foods high in omega-6s, then the total fat content of the daily diet soars. I do not believe this is a good thing to do. That means one’s diet becomes a very high fat diet, way above what is normal.
The Real Diet of Man includes mostly foods that are relatively low in EFAs. Take spinach for example. In one ounce there is 7.3 mg of omega-6s and 38.6 mg of omega-3s. Total EFAs weigh 45.6 mg. If one eats two pounds of spinach per day they consume 1,459.2 mg of fat. Compared to fat in oils, the fat content of spinach is incredibly low. So you can see that none of the fundamental foods found in nature can offset a manmade oil.
Now we come back to olive oil, a relatively low fat oil. Unfortunately it too is heavily weighted with omega-6s similar to canola oil making it an oil to avoid.