|Cod Liver Oil: Setting the Record Straight|
|Friday, 01 May 2009 18:38|
Debate on the merits of cod liver oil has been ricocheting around the internet of late, sparked by a recent posting from Dr. Joseph Mercola, in which he withdrew his recommendation to take cod liver oil. Mercola's remarks dovetail with establishment bias against this old-fashioned superfood. Cod liver oil has come under attack as a "dangerous" source of vitamin A. And while vitamin A has fallen to the bottom of the Vitamin Hit Parade, vitamin D has risen to the top, with many voices calling for extensive supplementation and an increase in the RDA for the sunshine vitamin.
The establishment view is as follows: the animal form of vitamin A is toxic and also interferes with vitamin D metabolism, so we should avoid foods rich in vitamin A, like liver, organ meats and cod liver oil; we can get all the vitamin A we need from the conversion of carotenes in plants; it is impossible to obtain adequate vitamin D from food, so we need to take vitamin D supplements.
In recent articles, we have put these mistaken notions to rest by showing the extensive scientific literature on the benefits of cod liver oil and vitamin A, as well as on the synergistic-rather than antagonistic-relationship of vitamins A and D. To bolster our premise that vitamin A is not toxic and that vitamin D can be obtained from food sources, we have published many articles on traditional diets, showing the high levels of vitamins A and D in traditional foods. For example, the traditional Scottish diet, described in a recent article, was rich in fish liver oils, organ meats, shellfish and fats, thus corroborating the discoveries of Dr. Weston A. Price, who found that emphasis on foods rich in vitamins A and D was universal among primitive populations.
However, care must be taken in the choice of cod liver oil. Most brands contain synthetic vitamins A and D and many have the wrong ratio of A to D. Please visit the following links for information on cod liver oil, the number one superfood:
Recent Studies on Cod Liver Oil
The following are references to recent articles published since 2000 in the scientific literature showing the myriad benefits of cod liver oil. Because modern diets are deficient in vitamins A and D, we recommend a daily dose of good quality cod liver oil for young and old.
Vitamin D Status: In Norway, three mĂ¸lje meals (consisting of cod liver and fresh cod-liver oil) provided an amount of vitamin D equal to 54 times the recommended daily dose. Subjects with food consumption habits that included frequent mĂ¸lje meals during the winter sustained satisfactory vitamin D levels in their blood, in spite of the long "vitamin D winter" (Public Health Nutr. 2004 Sep;7(6):783-9).
Vitamin D Status and Bone Loss: Inclusion of cod liver oil in the diet appears to attenuate the seasonal variation of vitamin D status in early postmenopausal women at northerly latitudes where quality of sunlight for production of vitamin D is diminished. Cod liver oil can thus protect against greater bone turnover, bone loss and obesity (Bone. 2008 May;42(5):996-1003).
Hip Fracture: Multivitamin or cod liver oil supplementation was associated with a significantly lower risk of any fracture. "We found no evidence to support any skeletal harm associated with increased serum indices of retinol exposure or modest retinol supplementation in this population" (J Bone Miner Res. 2005 Jun;20(6):913-20).
Multiple Sclerosis: In Arctic climates, supplemental cod-liver oil during childhood may be protective against multiple sclerosis later in life (J Neurol. 2007 Apr;254(4):471-7).
Breast Cancer: Reduced breast cancer risks were associated with increasing sun exposure and cod liver oil use from ages ten to nineteen. "We found strong evidence to support the hypothesis that vitamin D could help prevent breast cancer. However, our results suggest that exposure earlier in life, particularly during breast development, maybe most relevant" (Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2007 Mar;16(3):422-9).
Depression: Regular use of cod liver oil is negatively associated with high levels of depressive symptoms in the general population (J Affect Disord. 2007 Aug;101(1-3):245-9).
Wound Healing: The combination of zinc oxide and cod liver oil was found to be superior to the formulations containing only one active ingredient. This combination was also found to be most efficient in accelerating wound healing when it is retarded by repeated dexamethasone treatment (Dtsch Tierarztl Wochenschr. 2006 Sep;113(9):331-4).
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written by Scotty Logan, Mar 23 2010
CLO & sunshine, but vitamin D3 level was 15. What is that about?
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|Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 January 2010 18:49|