Nutrition is becoming increasingly costly as world population mushrooms, and worse, as oil-burning industries immorally pay more (and governments thus get more in taxes) for plant oil as fuel than farmers can get for producing food. The hungry poor majority is irrelevant, despite the fact that there has been superabundance of natural and environmetally friendly power available forever, and harnessable by relatively simple technology (which Industry and governments have criminally suppressed) for decades.
Fish oil omega3 – eicosapentanoic acid EPA and docosahexanoic acid DHA – seems to be the most valuable single nutrition supplement we have, apparently almost halving all major diseases (and mortality) from brain and immune dysfunction in infants and children to all the major common degenerative diseases of aging, from vascular and arthritic to immune and mental.
Plant oils have indispensable benefits. But as people have migrated away from the seaside and fishing, and fish has become scarce so that it is no longer a staple for the poor or as chickenfeed, it is reported that EPA/DHA intake has fallen below 100mg/week in USA. And the more omega6 we eat, and the longer we live, the less EPA+DHA our metabolism can apparently make.
So as diet has improved among the better-off on the Food-Pyramid-recommended higher cereal and nut intake, and livestock has been shifted from pasture-fed (at least some omega3) to grain-fed (high omega6), it is estimated that the historical 6:1 ratio of dietary omega6:omega3 in western diet has actually risen adversely to 20:1.
By contrast, historically those who lived as fisher people reputedly had/have the least chronic aging diseases, and the lowest diet omega6:omega3 ratio, reputedly 1:1.
Oils- including GLA gamma-linoleic acid and ALA alphalinoleic and linolenic acid- are enormously beneficial in humans, especially for immune modulation to steer between hyper immunity – allergy and rheumatic disease- and hypo-immunity – infections and cancer.
But if one eats a prudent Mediterranean-type diet and ensures at least 3gm fish oil i.e. close to a gram of EPA+DHA a day, is it wise or unwise to again increase the already high omega6 excess by encouraging omega6 supplements as in patent products e.g. Effamol?
Most of us older generation were brought up on a spoon of cod liver oil – Scotts Emulsion a day. This custom seems to have fallen into abeyance.
Now it is hard to tell whether this fact – fish oil deficiency – or junk food, or global pollution, or hours of television a day, or the abolition of discipline and obligatory physical exercise at most schools, has contributed more to apparent fall in learning and behaviour achievements in children, and increase in depression, diabetes, overweight, osteoporosis, anxiety, vascular, malignant, inflammatory and dementing diseases.
There is no evidence that patent mixed fish-plus-plant oils do better than fish oil alone in the indisputable improvement in ADHD attention deficit hyperactivity-disorder in children.