Don't Get Kicked In the Omega's!

Personal Training for Life
Find a personal trainer

Don't Get Kicked In the Omega's!

29th May 2014

Part One: Baby Formula

Very tricky subject this one, see, most people don’t want to be scientists, I mean, I hated science at school, now I seem to be getting drawn in to more and more science about weight loss and health. I guess you can’t promise to always make things simple but I promise if you pay attention to what I am about to discuss, you can make drastic changes to your health and well being.

I have already talked about Omega 3 fatty acids and the necessity to have these in the human diet. Another essential fatty acid is Omega 6 which you may have heard of. There is also omega 9. Together these all have their place in the human diet, however, since food processing has taken over, the imbalance in these fats has widened. The problem is that we are over consuming omega 6 and not enough Omega 3.

The main factor is this equation is the increased consumption of vegetable oils and soy bean oils. These “oils” are probably making up about 90% plus of modern western diets.

Knowing The Numbers

To keep this simple, before we starting heavily processing food. We consumed most of our oils and fats from meat and fish sources. In times gone by, meat and fish was of the quality that we would associate with “organic” or “grass fed” nowadays, it is safe to assume that most meat/fish was of this standard until the agricultural and industrial revolutions. With pollution and the explosion in populations, we have to now mass produce food (including meat and fish) so the quality has dropped.

When you look at labels, you may find that “vegetable oil” or “soy” is quite prominent. There are numerous reasons for this. The first is the increased shelf life of omega 6 heavy oils like vegetable, corn and soy oils. The longer the shelf life, the more profitable the product on sale is. Let’s look at some “organic” baby formula, NB This is not a morale discussion about parenting or breast feeding.

The particular example I have is a skimmed milk based formula with a sell by date of 14/11/2014 (which is about five months from the date in which I write this) Now then the ingredients list includes “vegetable oil” as the fourth ingredient. This would mean that this is quote prominent in the formula itself. When we look at the omega 6 – omega 3 ratio on the label itself, it’s...


Which basically means that there is 14 times more omega 6 than omega 3, based on the fact the ratio should be 1:1, you can see the potential issue here.

It’s the same with most grain based products. If we look at the worlds health and just do a quick straw poll of all the people we know, chances are their diets are heavily reliant on grains, processed food and other refined products. If we consider the rise in allergies in infants, could this be linked to the increased consumption of milk formulas which are lower in omega 3 than breast milk? It could be worth investigating.

So if you can breast feed, it would be recommended, if you can’t have a read of this BEST Infant Food for Infants of Moms that Can't Breast Feed

It is also important to remember that GP’s are not nutritionists and haven’t got the necessary knowledge to discuss diet at this level.

Conclusion & Learning Points

Here is the key point, if you haven’t been given the information, you can’t be expected to make the right choices. I am just giving some general pointers from the research I have done as part of my reading and my diploma in nutrition. If you need some extra guidance, here are some resources:

“The Queen Of Fats” by Susan Allport

“In Defence of Food” by Michael Pollen

Omega 3 Oils: The Essential Nutrients ?

Baby Formula: What Baby Formula Makers Wont Tell You ?