So, to follow up on my previous blog on this topic, how do you get your ratio of omega 6/omega 3 fatty acids back in balance in order to stop the pro-inflammatory disease process and heal your body and mind?
If You Are a Meat Eater
Get off factory-farmed commercial meats. Do not support the commercial meat industry. It is toxic for you, cruel to the animals and bad for our planet. How to do this?
- If you buy meat at Whole Foods Market, it should have an animal welfare rating of 4 or higher (it’s a green color sticker). (All the meats at Whole Foods have a posted rating of #1-5. If you don’t see this on the meat package, ask an employee to help you.
- Kosher meat is neither pasture/grass fed, nor organic, unless it specifically says so on the label.
- If you have sufficient freezer storage, consider patronizing a local farm that raises pasture-fed animals and stock up. Here are two useful links: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/659472 and http://www.beefdirect2you.com/beef-MA.aspx
- Aim for two servings of fatty fish per week. Small fish like sardines, herring, Atlantic mackerel and anchovies are lower in mercury than larger fish. Wild Alaskan salmon is higher in omega 3 than Atlantic salmon, which is farmed, and is relatively low in mercury. Tuna is high in omega 3, but also relatively high in mercury.
- There are many good reasons to avoid commercial milk, yogurt and cheese, even if you are not vegan. I will discuss this in a future article. From the standpoint of increasing your EPA/DHA, high omega 3 dairy products are available.
- Egg yolks from pasture fed chickens are an excellent source of omega 3.
- Remember that 99% of restaurants serve factory farmed, high omega 6 meat and poultry, farmed fish, and also use excessive amounts of vegetable oil in their cooking. If you take your health seriously, you need to limit restaurant eating to special occasions, and prepare more of your food at home. Consider being vegan when you eat out, and prepare your meat meals at home.
- Organic, grass fed butter and ghee (clarified butter) are good sources of omega 3, as well as CLA (conjugated fatty acids), which have many health benefits, including lower body fat while preserving muscle tissue, reducing insulin resistance, and preventing inflammation.
Stay tuned for Part III where I’ll describe how to do this if you a vegetarian. You may be surprised to learn that vegetarians (especially vegans) have been shown in various studies to have an even worse ratio of omega 6/omega 3 in their diets than meat eaters and need to take extra care to achieve a better balance of the omegas.