Fats are always demonized as the origin of obesity and even in the creation of diabetes mellitus. In the old food pyramid of the German Nutritional Organization, fats were classified at the very top as foods to avoid. This thinking has fundamentally changed, and we Mayr doctors use valuable oils as therapy. The well-known nomenclature of unsaturated, polyunsaturated, saturated fats and transfats emerges from the literature and nutritional declarations.
The classification of the various fatty acids follows according to differentiating criteria. On the one hand, it is indicated by the number of carbon atoms (18, 20 ...) as well as the number and length of the double bonds within the fatty acids. By these means they are graded from the fat-free (Omega) end of the fatty acids ensuing from the c atoms and possess thereby the designation Omega-3 or Omega-6 or Omega-9. This means the first double bond sits on 3, 6 or 9 carbon atoms. For the double bond itself it is still important whether the hydrogen atoms are found in cis- or trans-configuration.
Polyunsaturated fatty acids are essential, in fact necessary for life, and must be administered with the food. It is, however, very important that the various polyunsaturated fatty acids are found in specific balance. If this balance is disturbed, the cybernetic system falters through inflammation prevention and damage. The end effect is that everything is dependent upon the level of interleukin.
Function of the essential fatty acids in the body
As already mentioned, essential fatty acids have a variety of sometimes vital assignments in our bodies. They are components of cell membranes and organ tissues, and influence the plasticity of cells. This has influence upon micro-circulation as well as upon the elasticity of the blood vessels. Because of their dipolarity, they can neutralize acids as well as bases and influence thereby the maintenance of the acid-base balance. The fucntion of digestion is improved. They have an important influence upon the growth of cells or even the whole organism and cell division itself. Above all fatty acids are very important for the development of organs with a high oxygen usage as, for example, the brain. It can be shown in animal experiments that a lack of linolen acid in the fetal stage can lead to life-long learning disabilities.
Omega-3 and Omega-9 fatty acids have become famous through their ability to reduce cholesterol levels. The Mediterranean diet is based above all on the effect of olive oil, which is rich in simple unsaturated Omega-9 fatty acids, „oil acids“.
Above all today we have to bemoan a lack of Omega-3 fatty acids in our diets. We have to pay more attention to the selection of poly-unsaturated fatty acids so that we eat Omega-3 fatty acids instead, in other words, linolen acid, or eicosapentaenic acid (EPA) and dokosahexaenic acid (DHA), synthecized from it. In nature the ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 fatty acids stands as a rule at 4 to 1. In our present-day food we are glad if we achieve a ratio of 20 to 1. Therefore we should actually concentrate more upon the Omega-3 fatty acids. They are the factors which have an anti-inflammatory effect by neutralizing of arachidonic acids arising out of Omega-6 fatty acids, which through breaking down to prostaglandins of the thrid degree serve an anti-inflammatory funtion, which foster brain function, which serve as antidepressants, which reduce LDL cholesterol and which hinder the aggregation of platelets. In fact, with Omega-3 fatty acids, to a certain degree we can dispense with aspirin as thrombosis prevention.
As regards to the reduction of inflammation and cholesterol levels, the effect of the Omega-9 fatty acids of olive oil and rape oil are the same.
Omega-3 and Omega-9 fatty acids receive ever-greater importance as the erasers of „silent Inflammations“, the cause of most civilization sicknesses.
Now the question poses itself as to whether it is enough to take linseed oil or whether cold-water fish or Omega-3 capsules must be purchased as well.
Linseed oil contains linolen acids. Through many enzymatic breaking down steps, these are changed to eicosapentaenis acids, docosahexaenic acids and finally to prostaglandins of the third degree. A major enzym here is Delta-5 desaturase. This also breaks down Omega-6 fatty acids to the notorious arachidon acids. If many linolen acids are present, Delta-5 desaturase fails to create arachidonic fatty acids, and fewer inflammatory prostaglandins of the second degree are built. At the same time, there are more anti-inflammatory prostaglandins of the third degree.
There are people who have too little delta-5 desaturase. These people need very little linseed oil. Cold-water fish or Omega-3 capsules, which contain EPA, DPA and DHA, are more effective here.
Unsaturated fatty acids are found in animal as well as in plant foods. Linol acids, as the main agents of Omega-6 fatty acids, are the fundamental storage form of plant fats. We find higher concentrations in plant seeds, but also in animal fats like butter. Various lower plants such as ferns, moss and algae can synthesize these linol acids from linolen acids, which is not possible in the human organism. Therefore we find in these plants, or likewise in animals that feed on these plants, higher concentrations of linolen acids, and the major agent of Omega-3 fatty acids. Above all it is worth noting that the concentration of linolen acids is mostly less that the linol acids. Besides in linseed, hemp and soy we find higher concentrations of linolen fats in game, lamb and cold-water fish. Even domestic animals which eat many nuts and which move around a lot in cold climates have notable Omega-3 concentrations in their fat. We even hear of so-called Omega-3 pigs. Of course, care must always be taken not to launch a marketing gimmick. The concentration of Omega-3 fatty acids in milk depending on whether the milk comes from cows that graze in meadows or those which stand in stalls and eat only hay and fattening fodder has been reviewed by the food industry. Meadow-fed cows naturally have more Omega-3 fats in their milk.
The daily requirement of essentiel fatty acids is dependent upon several decisive facotrs. Above all, the constitution, physical activity, nutritional condition and general stress of the individual play a meaningful role. Also, men in general have a higher requirement than women. People who are overweight, interesteingly, have a higher requirement than those of normal weight. For healthy adults a daily requirement of ca. 3-9 g of Omega-6 linol acids, which comprises something like 1-2% of the daily calorie requirement. The requirement of Omega-3 fatty acids which consist above all in alpha-linolen acids lies between ca. 0,5 - 2 g/prer day. Important to mention is that for the effectiveness of unsaturated fatty acids, plenty of co-factors must be provided. These co-factors are above all Vit. E, Vit. B3, Vit. B6, Vit. C, magnesium and zinc. The essential fatty acids important for health cannot fulfill their assignments unless sufficient amounts of the co-factors are at hand or are provided to the organism.
In nature, poly-unsaturated fatty acids come exclusively in the cis-form. Only in the cis-form can they effect their health benefits. In the realm of industrial manufacture, they can mutate to trans-fatty acids. In this form the fatty acids present a substantial health risk. Arteriosclerosis is heavily encouraged, fatty acids are broken down at a slower rate and have no positive metobolic effect any more. Fortunately, trans-fatty acids are increasingly forbidden and food selection and culinary taste hasn‘t suffered in the least from this. One has to ask why these scandalous fats were ever or continue to be produced.
In the realm of the MayrPrevent® Therapy we must lay the emphasis of fat intake upon the Omega-3 and Omega-9 fatty acids. Therefore linseed, rape-seed and olive oils, alternating with hemp oil, walnut oil and grape-seed oil are excellent additions to the diet.
Because the oils can neither spoil nor ferment, they preserve the stomach and intestinal track. Their anti-inflammatory effect supports the therapy of the intestinal mucosa and all other processes. Besides this, connected with the dystrophin nucleus, they are appropriate for maintaining high-value caloric diets.
It is very important that especially the Omega-3-rich oils be stored away from light and in a cool place. The name linseed oil has, that of tasting bad, comes mostly because it has lost its flavor through improper storage. It has a distinctive taste when fresh.
Omega-3 fatty aids have the following positive effects:
• decrease in LDL cholesterol
• increase in HDL cholesterol
• decrease in triglycerides
• Slowing of platelete aggregation
• Heightened flexibility of the erythrozytes and blood vessels
Omega-9 fatty acids have the same effect. Only the slowing of the platelete aggregation, heightened flexibility and anti-depressant effects are lacking in them.
The use of oils with a high proportion of Omega-3 und Omega-9 fatty acids is an important component of the diet in the MayrPrevent®-Therapy.