Published on August 20, 2009
Omega-3 has moved to the upper level of awareness, even for the average consumer. In fact, it’s become “mainstream”. Recently I saw a generic brand of knock-off Oreos. Not surprisingly, their first ingredient was refined sugar and the second was bleached white flour. However, across the front of the box in a font larger than the name of the cookies it said “Omega-3!” If there were any doubt that Omega-3 was hot, this should lay it to rest. And while Omega-3 is vastly important — essential even — its usage and the way in which it’s being promoted has become somewhat misguided. As with many healthy foods or nutrients — once grabbed by the mainstream, they tend to be slightly misunderstood.
An upswing in awareness of Omega-3 consumption began to develop soon after a World Health Organization (WHO) report was released that suggested the average North American eats a vastly out-of-balance ration of Omega-6 to Omega-3. And that this was linked to serious health problems. Consumers of the Standard American Diet (SAD) commonly ingest a ratio that is in the realm of 20:1, the report states. That means that 20 times more Omega-6 is being consumed than Omega-3.