Why Fermented Cod Liver Oil?

Many people will cringe when they read the words, “fermented cod liver oil.”  You just did, didn’t you?  Don’t stop reading this because you think it sounds disgusting because it really is not bad and it has tremendous health benefits when incorporated into your daily routine!

Fermented cod liver oil (FCLO) is just that, cod livers that are fermented.  The process of fermentation is a natural preservation and this allows the fat soluble vitamins and beneficial oils to separate from the rest of the liver.  This is able to be done without damaging the fat-soluble vitamins.  This is unlike other methods of processing that use heat which is damaging to delicate nutrients.   Cool temperature fermentation allows the cod liver oil to maintain its Omega -3, Vitamin D and Vitamin A content.  Fermentation or enzymatic breakdown will help reduce food into their end usable forms thus help make the nutrients more absorbable to the body.

If you have been following some of my posts, you know that not all supplements are created equal.  This DEFINITELY is true of fish oils.  Why?  As I mentioned, the processing of these oils can damage all the nutrients as well as the oil.  You would never purposefully take rancid oil am I right?  No, you wouldn’t because this could cause the opposite effect on your body and be more harmful than beneficial.

I already mentioned that fermented cod liver oil contains your omega-3s, Vitamin D and Vitamin A.  Vitamins A and D are both necessary for many aspects of health.  Let’s face it, living in a northern state we are not getting enough Vitamin D, period.

As the Weston A. Price Foundation explains, Vitamins A and D need each other for proper absorption.

Vitamin D

At least 2,000 genes, or nearly 10 percent of your genes, have been identified that are directly influenced by Vitamin D.  I will write a future post on Vitamin D because there is SO much to be said about its impacts on our health from preventing the common cold/flu to detoxification to mood health, etc.

Vitamin A

We don’t hear as much about Vitamin A however this vitamin should not be overlooked.  Vitamin A is a little more difficult to obtain as our bodies need to convert beta-carotene, which is the inactive form to retinol (active form of Vitamin A).  I don’t want to make this more complicated than it is, but some people cannot do this conversion at all.  Vitamin A is found in significant amounts only in animal products like liver and grass-fed dairy.  Let’s be honest though, we don’t eat liver and other organ meats like our ancestors did.  This is another topic for discussion in the future!  Back to Vitamin A and to put it into perspective – 3 oz of beef liver contains about 27,000 IU of vitamin A.  To get the same amount from plant sources (however remember you need to be able to convert), you would need to eat 50 cups of cooked kale!  I’m a total foodie but that’s way too much to eat to get the same amount of Vitamin A.

Vitamin D and Vitamin A are essential for your immune system.  They work in tandem and are precursors to active hormones that regulate the expression of your genes. 

Since there are many studies regarding cod liver oil and its benefits with certain conditions, I am including a link to the Weston A. Price Foundation’s website so you can browse through it if you are interested:  https://www.westonaprice.org/?s=fermented+cod+liver+oil

I believe mother nature is more intelligent than us and provides us with nutrients in the proper proportions.  Fermented cod liver oil has a synergistic ratio of Vitamin A and Vitamin D that work in concert with one another along with your wonderful omega-3s.  My family takes fermented cod liver oil daily for a variety of reasons specially to help our immune system!  I trust one company that uses a cold process fermentation process as I know the cod liver oil is in its most natural state.  Don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you want to try this superfood!

To discuss you or your family’s health or for more information about functional medicine and testing, email me at drstephanievw@gmail.com  or contact our office to make an appointment for a consultation at 920-243-7140.

In good health,

Dr. Stephanie

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