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Omega 3 or Omega 6…Eat These Not Those

Sorry for the lack of posts the lack of updates the last few days.

There’s been a few things happening at the Team Mohr HQ…

…namely, we’ve grown.

We now have a new daughter in the Mohr House.  Everyone is doing great.  Kara is recovering well.  And Ella (our 2.5 year old) is wondering who just completely took over her world!

Back to the HOT topic the other day — one of most popular blogs to date — is there a fat more dangerous than Trans fat?

On the blog I talked about the dangers of very high omega-6 oils, like soybean oil.  But while the intake of soybean oil has skyrocketed, it’s certainly not the only culprit of our insanely high intake of the oils.

Lets take a step back.

If Omega-6 fats are essential, why do we keep saying they’re dangerous?

Because while they ARE essential, too many in the body can cause a host of issues, namely inflammation.  And inflammation — chronic inflammation — has been linked to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, Alzeimers and pretty much every other disease known to man.

So one major goal with our diets should be to "tame the flame" or, in other words, eat less inflammatory foods.

Outside of soybean oil, which again is in more foods than you’d expect, where else can we find high levels of omega-6 fats that we need to decrease?  Here’s just a few…

  • Corn oil
  • Safflower oil
  • Sesame oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Walnut oil
  • Pumpkin oil

But it’s not just oils that are a culprit.

A brilliant scientist and omega 3 fat pioneer, came up with something called the Omega-3 Balance Score — where foods are "ranked" based on their omega-3:omega-6 balance.  The goal with his lists are to eat more of the foods that have higher positive numbers and less than have negative.  Here are some examples below of some common foods:

A VERY appreviated list from what’s found on Omea-3 Score Sheet website:

Eat These (short list)

Anhovy, 78
Tuna, 61
Salmon, 52
Sea bass, 48.6
Tuna, 46
Flaxseed, 28
Beans (pinto, kidney, adzuki). + 0.5
Spinach, +3
Collard, +1.9

Eat Less of These
Rice, -0.6
Macaroni, -0.5
Most Ready to eat cereals, -0.9
Rye crackers, -1.1
Croissants, -1.3
English Muffins, -2.1
Waffles, -18.2
Puff pastry, -30.6

Now, this is a very, very abbreviated list from the site listed above.  But definitely check out that link, as you may be very, very surprised with what you find!  Just wanted to give some examples.  Keep in mind, while we like the overall idea of this, it’s certainly not the only measure of food quality.  Walnuts, for example, have a very negative score — but they have loads of other health benefits, so like most things, it’s not the only measure of quality.

But as a whole, it’s a good idea to eat more "positive" foods and a lot less "negative" foods.

Who knows.  Maybe it’s what’s been keeping you stuck with your weight loss efforts.

What do you think?  Let us know by leaving a comment or clicking "like" on FB to share with your friends.

4 Responses to Omega 3 or Omega 6…Eat These Not Those

  1. Kevin Lin November 21, 2011 at 3:32 pm #

    I looked at that score sheet, but I strongly believe there were some foods that do not deserve to be on the “Eat Less” sheet, and those are: nuts (especially walnuts), chickpeas, tofu (organic varieties), chicken (organic), pork, and brown rice

    • Chris and Kara Mohr November 21, 2011 at 6:00 pm #

      Hey Kevin -

      Great point and I did try to emphasize that this is just one of several tools to use. Many nuts have “negative” scores, but we know there’s a ton of other healthy benefits they offer. So this isn’t the be all and end all…just one to consider. Kind of like the glycemic index. It’s OK, but has limitations in my opinion. Thanks

  2. Tim November 21, 2011 at 6:54 pm #

    Would like to add that there are flaxseed waffles available as well. Our little girl LOVES waffles, but I would no more give her an Eggo than I would give her a cigarette. Van’s brand flaxseed waffles are pretty widely available; if you’re in Texas with an HEB or Central Market in the neighborhood you can get the Central Market Organics. BTW they taste WAAAY better too.

    • Chris and Kara Mohr November 22, 2011 at 7:41 pm #

      Thanks for this!

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