The low-fat diet is quite possibly the most unhealthy diet trend ever perpetrated by mankind.
For over three decades we have been bombarded with negative information concerning fat and I’m here to tell you it’s nonsense. We’ve been told by the food industry that whole foods like eggs, coconut oil, and butter are unhealthy and that we should substitute them with refined vegetable oils, plastic margarine spread, and fat substitutes like Olestra, which causes cramps, gas, loose bowels, blocks vitamin absorption, and is currently ranked #38 in Time Magazine’s 50 Worst Inventions!
There are tons of studies, articles, theories, and opinions about fat and fish oil, and although many of these authors have advanced scientific and nutritional credentials,
they have zero experience reversing cancer with nutrition and natural therapies.
Keep that in mind as you read this post.
Ok so let’s start with the basics: Eating fat doesn’t make you fat.
It’s excessive carbohydrates (grains, starches, and sugars) in your diet that make you fat.
We have 100 trillion cells in our body and every cell membrane in our body is built with protein and fat (amino acids and essential fatty acids). Our brains are made of fat; we need fat for insulation; and our bodies store and burn fat for energy. So we all need fat. Big time.
Excess body fat is simply stored energy.
Before the industrial age, carbohydrates were harvested and consumed in the summer and fall when the work days are long. Excess consumption of carbs signals the body to store fat for winter. Naturally this was time of year when our ancestors would put on some extra pounds. That extra “junk in the trunk” provided insulation from the cold and energy to burn; helping them get through the winter when food was scarce.
Today in first world countries carbohydrates are cheap to grow and available year round. As a result we eat them year round; perpetually storing fat for a winter food scarcity that never comes.
The late Dr. Robert Atkins was right. The fastest way to burn excess fat and lose weight is to eliminate your carb consumption. The raw vegan diet will also get you the same results. However neither are sustainable in the long term for most people. I should mention that exercising 3-5 times per weight will accelerate the weight loss process.
15-60% of your daily diet should be from fat.
I know that’s a broad range, but the point is you have a lot of leeway, and you don’t have to be super strict about it. I’m on the upper end of that percentage. If you get enough fat in your diet, you don’t crave carbs or sweets. I personally eat as much as 1500 fat calories per day. Don’t freak out, these are good fats. I’ll get to them later in the post.
I really didn’t understand the role fatty acids play in cancer prevention and reversal until I read Brian Peskin’s massive 566 page volume of research entitled
The Hidden Story of Cancer.
It is an incredible book and it’s not cheap. (I put it on my wish list and then found out my mom already had it! Thanks mom!) Click the link and you’ll see what I mean.
The membrane around every cell in your body is built with two Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs): Linoleic Acid and Alpha-Linolenic Acid. The body cannot make these essential fatty acids. They must come from food.
Linoleic Acid (LA) is commonly referred to as Omega-6 or n-6
Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA) is commonly referred to as Omega-3 or n-3
There is also Oleic Acid or Omega-9 which is found in abundance in olives, avocados, and animal fat. It is beneficial but not essential as the body can manufacture Omega-9 (that’s what the “junk in your trunk” is made of)
Recently Omega-6 fats have been demonized in the media, and many health experts are touting the benefits of Omega-3. The most common recommendation I see is that you should increase your intake of Omega-3 to counteract the effects of all the excessive Omega-6 in the modern processed diet.
A much better strategy is to cut out processed foods with high levels of Omega-6 and artificial ingredients than to try to compensate by taking more Omega-3.
Omega 3 and 6 are both vital, but the truth is your body needs as much as or more Omega-6 than Omega-3. The ideal ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 is between 1:1 and 4:1. It’s no accident that there is more Omega-6 than Omega-3 in almost all natural food: organic seeds and nuts, grass-fed meats, and raw dairy.
Only flax, chia, sacha inchi, and seafood have more Omega-3 fats than Omega-6.
The Cancer Connection
Thanks to the research of Nobel Prize winning biochemist Otto Warburg, we know that cancer is caused by a lack of oxygen to the cell. Warburg even proved that he could cause a benign tumor to become cancerous by impairing its oxygen respiration. Healthy cells respirate, that is they use oxygen. When cells are deprived of as little as 35% of their required oxygen for an extended period of time they will eventually mutate to run on glucose instead of oxygen and become cancerous. This is called glycolysis.
i.e. Cancer cells feed on sugar.
I suggest you look up Warburg’s “The Metabolism of Carcinoma Cells” from The Journal of Cancer Research, 1925.
Cells built with mutant fats do not respirate oxygen properly.
The body will construct cells with whatever fatty acids it has available, including trans-fats. Trans-fats and hydrogenated fats are adulterated mutant fatty acids created by the food industry to improve the shelf life of foodstuffs. These are “Frankenfats” that we were never intended to eat. Trans-fats are present in most vegetable and cooking oils, and processed food. This is like building a house with shoddy materials. It seems fine in the short run, but you’re going to develop major problems down the road. The more cells your body builds with bad fats, the more likely you are to have oxygen deprived cells that mutate to live on glucose and become cancerous. Processed fats are extremely unhealthy and contribute to disease.
The problem with the modern processed food diet is we are getting way too many trans-fats, too much Omega-6, and not enough Omega-3. Commercially raised beef and chicken can have a ratio of as much as 15:1 Omega-6 to Omega-3 because the animals are fed grain-based diets specifically designed to fatten them up. This is what lead to the demonizing of omega-6 fats and the popularity of Omega-3 supplements to balance out the Omega-3:6 ratio.
The best building blocks of cells are unadulterated Parent Essential Fatty Acids Omega-6 and Omega-3 from organic sustainable sources.
Parent EFAs vs. Derivatives
It is critically important to differentiate between Parent EFAs and Derivatives. It’s the elephant in the room that most “health experts” are ignoring. Parent EFAs are short-chain fatty acids. They are foundational fats used in 95% of your body’s processes.
Derivatives are long-chain fatty acids. They are supplemental fats used in very specific functions in the body. Your body needs mostly Parent EFAs and uses enzymes to manufacture derivatives from them as needed. As long as you get enough parent EFAs, you will never be short of derivatives.
Parent Omega-6 is Linoleic Acid (LA); its derivatives are AA, GLA and DGLA.
Parent Omega-3 is Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA); its derivatives are EPA and DHA.
Here’s an overly simplified example:
If you wanted to build a house out of legos, which would you rather have:
A bag of lego bricks, or a bag of lego triangles?
Answer: The lego bricks, because it will be very difficult to build a house with a bunch of triangles.
Lego bricks are extremely versatile and foundational to building, lego triangles are very specialized with limited use.
Short-chain fatty acids (Parent EFAs) are like lego bricks, they are foundational fatty acids. They are much more versatile to the satisfy the needs of the body, and the body can build on to them, creating specialized long-chain fatty acids (Derivatives), for special functions as needed. Derivatives are more like lego triangles, they have limited use and cannot be converted back to short chain fatty acids.
There is a popular false assumption that the body has a difficult time converting Parent EFAs in to derivatives, because it only converts a small amount, and because some people convert a little more than others. Therefore you must supplement with omega-3 derivatives like fish oil. This is not the case. The body will convert the amount it needs on any given day, plain and simple.
Make sure you get Parent EFAs and your body will produce the derivatives it needs.
The Delicate Balance: Too much of one fatty acid can lead to a deficiency in the other. Too much EPA from fish oil can cause a deficiency in AA (arachnidonic acid), the Omega-6 derivative. And too much Omega-6 from vegetable oils can cause a deficiency in DHA, the Omega-3 derivative.
Four Reasons Why I Don’t Take Fish Oil:
1) Fish oil is not natural
Fish don’t have oil glands. They are jammed into giant juicing machines to crush them with enough force to squeeze oil from their flesh. Then this oil is heavily processed. According to Udo Erasmus, author of Fats That Heal, Fats That Kill, “Fish oil Omega-3s (EPA and DHA) are about 25 times more sensitive to damage done by light, oxygen, and heat than omega 6-containing nut and seed oils.” As a result, most fish oil is filtered, deodorized, bleached, molecularly distilled, subjected to high heat, and treated with caustic soda and resin. This is not an acceptable substitute for eating wild-caught fish.
The denatured fatty acids in fish oil can be as bad or worse for you than hydrogenated vegetable oils!
2) Fish oil is toxic
Most fatty fish are contaminated with industrial pollutants like mercury, PCBs, dioxin, and chlordane; and most fish oil supplements do not disclose the source of their fish oil. There are only a few nutraceutical grade fish oil supplements that I would trust. One is Biotics Research Biomega-3. The majority of fish oils supplements on the market are toxic, low-quality garbage. Throw that stuff out!
3) Fish oil does not contain Parent Omega-3 (Alpha-Linolenic Acid).
Fish oil is nearly 100% Omega-3 Derivatives EPA and DHA. These derivatives are certainly beneficial to the body. EPA is needed to help regulate cell metabolism, and DHA supports your brain, vision, heart and is anti-inflammatory. The body converts 5-36% of Parent Omega-3 into the derivatives EPA and DHA depending on how much it needs. (Men do not have difficulty converting, women simply convert more because they need more). The majority of Parent EFAs are used to build every cell and tissue in your body. This is why it is more important to make sure you are getting Parent Omega-3 and Parent Omega-6 Essential Fatty Acids. These are the highest quality cellular building blocks.
4) Fish oil can impair your immune system
Excess consumption of fish oil was actually shown to decrease immune system response and increase harmful infection from bacteria.
“…Studies indicate that at the levels used, fish oil decrease a wide range of immune cell responses (natural killer cell, cytotoxic T lymphocyte activities, lymphocyte proliferation and production of IL-2 and IFN-y)…”
“…relatively low levels of the long chain omega-3 fatty acids (EPA or DHA)…are sufficient to bring about some of the suppressive effects”
“…This decrease (of inhibited lymphocyte proliferation and natural killer cell activity) causes increased cellular bacteria [infection] and impaired tumor cell killing”
That was reported at the International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids 4th Congress June 4-9 2000, Tsukuba, Japan. From the article “Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids, Inflammation and Immunity” by Philip C. Calder, Institute of Human Nutrition, University of Southampton, UK.
What about all the fish oil studies?
“Dozens of randomized, controlled trials have tested the effect of fish oil supplementation and increases in the intake of fatty fish on total and cardiovascular mortality. Virtually all of them have been conducted in people with established heart disease taking drugs such as statins and aspirin, and most of them have lasted fewer than two years. In 2004, the Cochrane Collaboration published a massive review and meta-analysis of these trials. The authors pooled the data from forty-eight trials lasting longer than six months, the only effect that could be distinguished from chance was a reduced risk of heart failure.
Fish oil provided no reduction in total or cardiovascular mortality.
Trials lasting less than one year were most likely to show positive results, while the only trial lasting more than four years, “The Diet and Reinfarction Trial #2 (DART 2)” showed a 15 percent increase in total mortality and a 30 percent increase in cardiovascular mortality. (“Increase in mortality” means more people died.)
DART 2 used dietary advice to increase fatty fish intake in addition to fish oil supplementation, so could not be placebo-controlled or double-blind, and funding problems led to interruptions of the recruitment process in the middle of the trial. Nevertheless, with over three thousand participants it was one of the largest fish oil trials ever conducted and, with over four years follow-up, it was the longest fish oil trial ever conducted. Thus, we should not casually dismiss the findings of this trial.
None of these trials provided any evidence that healthy people benefit from taking fish oil or that doses higher than one gram of omega-3 fatty acids per day provide any benefit over smaller doses.
The results of the DART 2 trial are particularly concerning because, they suggest that high intakes of Poly-unsaturated fatty acids from PUFA’s (fish or fish oil) may increase the risk of morbidity and mortality when consumed over the course of many years.”
-Chris Masterjohn Sept 22 2010 from his article
Parent Omega 3 and 6 EFAs are much more important and widely used in the body than derivatives EPA and DHA. The best plant sources of Parent Omega-6 are hemp seed, sunflower, safflower, and evening primrose. The best plant sources of Parent Omega-3 are flax, hemp, and sacha inchi. Because the body converts derivatives as needed, fish oil and krill oil are not only unnecessary, but potentially harmful.
If you are still determined that you need Omega-3 fats from fish, EAT MORE FISH; the best and cleanest source is Wild-Caught Alaskan Salmon (Sockeye or Copper River).
My High-Fat Diet
Earlier in the post I mentioned that I often eat as much as 1500 fat calories per day. Here’s the breakdown:
About half of my fat calories are from the fresh young coconut in the Coconut Fruit Smoothie that I drink every day.
The rest of my fat intake comes from foods I consume in various amounts weekly: raw milk, raw cheese, raw pasture-raised eggs, olive oil, avocados, raw nuts and seeds, clean meats (organic grass-fed beef and lamb, organic free-range chicken, wild-caught alaskan salmon).
I also take Parent EFA supplements daily.
Parent EFA supplementation is especially critical if you are vegetarian, vegan, or just don’t eat healthy.
Many vegetarians/vegans have a tendency be be carboholics; living on beans, grains, starches, and sugar. Even those following the raw vegan diet need to supplement parent EFAs Omega 6 and 3, because you probably aren’t getting enough of them.
I want to make sure I am getting Essential Fatty Acids (Parent Omega 3 and 6) in my body every day.
There are two brands I take and recommend:
Udo’s Choice 3-6-9 Blend (Developed by Udo Erasmus for Flora)
This is a blend of organic plant/seed oils that I’ve taken for years. The ratio is 2:1:1 in favor of Parent Omega-3. You can get it in the refrigerated section of Whole Foods, The Vitamin Shoppe, select health food stores, and online HERE.
YES Ultimate EFAs (Developed after Brian Peskin’s research)
This is also a blend of organic plant/seed oils: Evening Primrose, Sunflower Seed, Flax Seed, and Pumpkin Seed. The ratio is 2:1 in favor of Parent Omega-6.
I take Ultimate EFAs in the morning and 20 minutes before crossfit training in the afternoon and I have noticed a significant increase my in stamina and recovery time and almost zero lactic acid burn.
YES is one of my new favorite discoveries. They only make three products. The other two are Chelated Minerals and an Herbal Detox Formula (Essiac plus Cat’s Claw).
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Apparently I have some leverage because I actually worked out a deal with YES to give my readers a discount! Mention “chris beat cancer” and they will give you a 10% discount off your first order. Just make sure you call in your order over the phone.
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