Dec 20, 2020
Omega 3s are an unsaturated fat (actually an oil, a fat is a solid). Specifically a polyunsaturated fat/oil. Omega 3s come from fatty fish and certain plant seeds.
Omega 3s are an important nutrient because they help to build one of the two tails of the phospholipid molecule that makes up every one of the trillions of cells in your body.
Omega 3s are also anti-inflammatory which helps reduce systemic inflammation, as well as effects of topical skin conditions that result from inflammation - like acne, pigmentation, or rosacea.
There are several things that need to be taken into consideration before recommending Omega 3s to your client.
1. Do they have True Genetic Acne?
2. Do they have a gall bladder? If not, are they taking bile salts?
3. What is their ancestral heritage? Do they come from coastal people or land locked people?
4. Are they vegan or vegetarian?
5. Are they post menopausal?
6. What form will they tolerate taking?
7. Do they have an environmental stance that affects their preferences?
For a normal, healthy, individual who does not have True Genetic Acne, and has their gall bladder, the best choice of Omega 3 is Cod Liver Oil, because the liver contains vitamins A & D which are excellent for skin health.
Unfortunately, the liver also contains iodine, making it an unacceptable choice for True Genetic Acne which is triggered by iodine. For acne individuals the best choice of Omega 3 is fish (body) oil which uses the whole fish instead of just the liver.
For someone who has had their gall bladder removed they must supplement for the rest of their lives with Bile Salts at meals. Sadly, the majority of doctors do not advise their patients of this biological need, post cholecystectomy (removal). The use of bile salts helps greatly to assist the body's ability to continue to emulsify fats.
Without a gall bladder, or bile salt supplementation, a person will have a hard time breaking down fats and might even avoid eating fats due to the way it makes them feel - icky.
If a client has had their gall bladder removed and is not taking bile salts, they should use an emulsified form of Omega 3 that is specifically made for these people. Ideally they would take bile salts so they can take a regular form of Omega 3s.
Ancestral heritage determines their ability to break down plant based forms of Omega 3s. If they come from landlocked peoples who would have eaten seeds such as flax seeds, they may be better equipped, genetically, to break down and utilize the Omega 3s contained in plants. It takes the body several steps to break down the plant and access the Omega 3. This is not very bioavailable, so a body's genes must have ancestral memory to know how to do this.
If the individual comes from coastal or seafaring people, they will not do well with plant based Omega 3. Animal based omega 3s from fish are more bioavailable to humans than plant based omega 3s because there is no breakdown necessary. Animal Omega 3 is immediately bioavailable.
This aspect is based on getting Omega 3 naturally through food, not through man-made supplements. Ideally, we should be getting our nutrients from our foods so that over time we become sufficient and sustain that sufficiency each time we eat.
Sadly, the foods people eat today are either devoid of nutrients because they aren't whole/real foods, or because the low quality real foods are deficient in nutrients because of growing practices.
So, if supplementing, does the ancestral heritage aspect matter since the already extracted oil is what you are taking? 🤷♀️ I don't know the answer to that. I personally would go with animal based as I know that is bioavailable in all bodies.
This brings us to the vegans & vegetarians. If they can do the animal based Omega 3, that would be ideal, because humans do need animal products, regardless of your beliefs, or what the media celebrities tell you. Adamant vegans can try a new plant based Omega 3 called Ahiflower which has been shown to be bioavailable, and is a better choice than flax if they are not in menopause.
Post menopausal women will want to alternate with both animal and plant Omega 3s. And the plant of choice would be flax because it is a potent phytoestrogen which may benefit a (post) menopausal woman. Soy is never recommended because of the side effects to the thyroid and mineral depletion that it causes.
Next is the form of the supplement that the client can take willingly. Omega 3 comes in bottled liquid, liquid filled softgels, and an emulsified mixture, (gummies are never recommended for anyone, not even kids). Ideally liquid is the best choice for everyone, but not everyone can handle it. If gagging is an issue try the softgels or emulsified form. However, the softgels are not recommended for anyone with low stomach acid or digestive issues, they should take the liquid or the emulsified form. Anyone without a gall bladder should take the emulsified form. Kids may tolerate the emulsified form.
Lastly, if sourcing and sustainability practices matter to the client this should be the last criteria to take into consideration. My ratings for best practices are #1-Rositas Cod Liver Oil, #2-Nordic Naturals any type.
My generalized recommendations:
Always food first!
#1-Rositas Cod Liver Oil
#2-Nordic Naturals Cod Liver Oil
#3-Nordic Naturals Fish Oil/Omega 3
#7-Flax in various forms from food to supplements.
XO Cassandra Lanning
The Renegade Esthetician