Ongoing Cod Liver Oil Controversy
Several weeks ago we sent out an update on vitamin A and cod liver oil to all our members, in response to a negative article about cod liver oil by John Cannell of the Vitamin D Council. This update is now posted on our website at http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/december-2008-update-on-cod-liver-oil/. The important take-home message is that there is nothing in the new study authored by Cannell and others to indicate any toxicity whatsoever from cod liver oil; however, the authors have put a politically correct spin on the findings in order to frighten people away from this life-giving superfood and vector them into taking isolated vitamin D instead.
Now Dr. Joe Mercola has come out with his own anti-cod liver oil statement, based on Cannell’s study. What particularly concerns us is not the fact that Dr. Mercola has a different opinion on the subject, but that he has completely misrepresented the teachings of the Weston A. Price Foundation, stating that the Foundation believes “. . . there is sufficient vitamin A in the diet of most Americans, especially if they are taking a multivitamin.”
The crux of our teachings at WAPF is that there is NOT sufficient vitamin A in the diet of most Americans, especially in comparison to the diets of healthy primitive peoples. Vitamin A was plentiful in the diets of primitive peoples because they ate the liver of sea and land animals, animal fats such as seal oil, candle fish oil and butter from grass-fed animals, and other rich sources such as fish eggs and fish heads. It is difficult to see how investigators can claim that vitamin A is toxic when traditional diets were so rich in this nutrient. As most modern people do not eat these foods, at least not in abundance, we recommend cod liver oil to supply vitamin A, as well as other fat-soluble nutrients.
Also, we have NEVER recommended multivitamins! We recommend nutrient-dense food (such as cod liver oil).
Not all cod liver oils are created equal. It is important that cod liver oil contain sufficient vitamin D to balance the vitamin A content. Please visit our cod liver page at http://www.westonaprice.org/cod-liver-oil/.
We are planning a long article on cod liver oil, including a point-by-point rebuttal of Mercola’s statement, in the Spring 2009 issue of Wise Traditions.
In-Home Vitamin D Test
ZRT Laboratories now provides an inexpensive, in-home accurate test for vitamin D [25(OH)D]. Normally this test is $100-$200 and requires a doctor’s visit. The ZRT test can be done at home and costs $65 (or 4 for $55 each) at the link:
You can order them through the lab directly, cost $135, by calling the company in Beaverton, Oregon at 1-866-600-1636.
The test involves collecting a few drops of blood after a finger prick and sending the blotter paper back to ZRT in the postage-paid envelope provided with the kit. Your results will be sent to you by mail in about a week.
We’d like as many members as possible to participate in some research on vitamin D, which we will be able to use in our upcoming article on cod liver oil. Please take the ZRT test and send us the results along with the brand and amount of cod liver oil you are taking, as well as any other vitamin D supplements. Please let us know how long you have been taking these products. We’d like to compile this information by early February. (We’ll keep your details confidential, of course.) This is the perfect time to do this research since few of us are spending much time in the sun right now.
New Anti-Raw Milk Article
The journal Clinical Infectious Diseases has just published a very unscientific anti-raw milk article that ends with a most inappropriate threat. According to the authors, “physicians, veterinarians, and dairy farmers who promote, or even condone, the human consumption of unpasteurized milk and dairy products may be at risk for subsequent legal action.” The article is a model of industry agenda posing as science. We have posted a detailed response at
The credits for this article are most interesting. The authors thank John Sheehan, FDA head of dairy and egg safety “for valuable discussions on the subject during the preparation of the manuscript.” We have effectively stymied Sheehan with our careful rebuttals of his official statements (posted at realmilk.com). Funding in partial support of the article was provided by state and federal funds allocated to the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Wooster, Ohio. (In Ohio, cow share programs are booming after an attempt by the Ohio Department of Agriculture to criminalize them was defeated in court.)
The Weston A. Price Foundation has begun to receive funds earned when our members use goodsearch.com rather than the more popular search engines. WAPF receives about 1.3 cents per search on the Yahoo-powered search engine and about three percent of purchases made through their online retail partners, from Amazon to Zappos.
You can help support the Foundation with every internet search or purchase. Just go to goodsearch.com to register and select your charity, and then use the search engine for your internet searches and purchases.
Raw Milk Number One at Change.org!
As we informed you in an earlier email, Change.org is a private website that has a section of their website devoted to voting for the top ten ideas for change. We encouraged our members to vote for “Legalize Raw Milk” during the first round of voting and this issue got the highest number of votes in its category!
We now have a second chance to vote for legalizing raw milk in individual states and across state lines. If this issue is among the top ten ideas in the competition, it will be presented to the Obama team and also at a press conference at the National Press Club on January 16; further, Change.org will then email information about our campaign to their 200,000 members.
DON’T WAIT! Please go to http://www.change.org/ideas/view/legalize_milk and cast your vote for raw milk. If you have not yet joined Change.org, you will need to do so-the process is very simple. Voting closes on January 15.
Please get every member of your family to vote for raw milk and circulate this announcement to all your groups. Let’s aim for tens of thousands of votes for raw milk and earn this fantastic publicity opportunity. We can do it if everyone participates.
Also Vote Against NAIS
And while you are casting your vote for raw milk, please also cast your vote against the National Animal Identification System (NAIS). The link is http://www.change.org/ideas/view/stop_nais. Let’s send a strong message to the USDA against radio chipping of our animals and registration of our farms!
A Raw Milk Event!
Midwest raw milk dairy farmer Max Kane, who credits raw milk with saving his life, is traveling across the U.S. powered exclusively by raw milk. You can follow his progress at www.therawmilkparty.com. He is raising funds to produce a documentary on raw milk. He will end his odyssey in Malibu, California at the home of Aajonus Vonderplanitz on Sunday, January 25, 2009.
Max will be toting a few glass jars and reloading his Raw Milk supply as he travels from farm to farm during his journey across the nation. Max will update the world of his travels live every Wednesday 4:30pm-5pm (CST) via healthylife.net internet radio with The Pursuit of Health’s host Jay Cruz.
Happy New Year
The Board of Directors and Staff at the Weston A. Price Foundation wish you a healthy and prosperous new year!
Sally Fallon Morell, President
Kathy O’Brien Kramer, Office Manager