. . . it CAN, if taken without antioxidant protection! Fish and flax oil are our two best sources of omega 3 fatty acids. The omega 3s are absolutely necessary for good health, and most Americans are deficient in them - a significant factor in our epidemic of chronic disease. However, a recent study offers a good reminder that these fats must be handled with care, as they are readily oxidized both outside and inside of the body. Excessive oxidation causes cell damage and aging. In this study, mice fed a daily diet containing 5% fish oil (the equivalent of about 4 tablespoons of cod liver oil on a 2,000 calorie-a-day diet) demonstrated increased oxidative stress, which promoted aging and diminished their lifespan. Does this mean we should avoid fish oil? Absolutely not! It means that with high doses, it is very important to take the specific antioxidant vitamin E as well. One capsule for each 40 lbs of body weight taken with breakfast is ample protection in most cases. Meanwhile, flax and cod liver oils are best kept in the freezer. When you first open a new bottle, break open a capsule of vitamin E and squeeze it into the bottle to counter oxidation. When you want to liquefy the frozen contents, run warm water over the bottle. You will find omega 3 fatty acids in our EFA formula. Since vitamin E is included in this formula, there is no need to take additional E if this is your only source of omega 3s. However if you are taking, for example, our EFA formula plus a tablespoon each a day of cod liver oil and flax oil (highly recommended), or our fish oil formula, add vitamin E as indicated above to your supplement program. Tsuduki T. Long-term intake of fish oil increases oxidative stress and decreases lifespan in senescence-accelerated mice. Nutrition. March 2011;27(3):334-337.
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