Omega 6 to Omega 3 Ratios May Not Be Important

Conventional paleo philosophy stresses the importance of balancing intake of essential fattyacids, i.e. that dietary ratios should be anywhere from 1:1 to 4:1 to properly regulate pro-inflammatory fatty acid synthesis. It turns out that ratios may not be as important as the totalamount of omega-3s in the diet. Loren Cordain explains, "Newer research suggests both omega-6 and omega-3 FAs reduce therisk of heart disease, and the ratios of these fatty acids is not useful and can be misleading. Onestudy reported that omega-6 FAsdo not inhibit the beneficial effects of omega 3 FAs and thecombination of both fatty acids leads to the greatest reduction in levels of inflammation. . . .However, the real issue here is that omega-3 FAs bind to G coupled-protein receptors, andcause broad anti-inflammatory effects. If you remove the 3s from your diet, inflammationreturns. This means that adequate omega-3 intake alone, regardless of omega-6 intake, is enough to sto inflammation in the body. The same is apparent when you look at the biochemicalpathway of omega-6 and omega-3 FAs. They compete for the same enzyme through a processknown as competitive inhibition." Cordain continues with recomendations, "The best method of action to pursue, is to simply followa Paleo Diet and eat plenty of fish rich in omega-3. If you want to avoid dietary intake of omega-3, and obtain requirements from a supplement, DHA is preferable to all other forms of omega-3,since it can be retro converted into EPA. Only in the context of a very inflammatory diet (like thestandard Western diet) does the ratio of omega-3 to 6 matter. . . This isn’t to say that the omega- 3 to omega-6 ratio is completely irrelevant, but if you’re consuming a Paleo Diet, you will likely begetting the right amounts of these essential fatty acids for optimial health." Source, Loren Cordain,