To me, this is just another one of those things that might be useful to keep in the far far back of your mind, but if you make it one of your health goals, it's going to drive you nuts (which have a lot of omega 6s btw.) Being on an autoimmune protocol has taught me 2 things, both of which you're free to disagree with:
Purchasing organic PRODUCE is more important than organic meat.
I consume an O3:O6 ratio that many Paleo followers would condemn as pro-inflammatory. I've been consuming this O3:O6 ratio for about a year now with no noticeable negative health effects. I imagine my ratio is still much lower than all SAD eaters.
A ratio of 1:1 would be ideal if we lived in a perfect world. But we don't so 1:4 is reasonable. Most SAD eaters get anywhere from 1:10-1:20+. My ratio was probably 1:6 to 1:8 last time I bothered to calculate it (months ago.)
I eat significant amounts of omega-6s in the form of MUFAs mainly from lard and olive oil. I consume these almost daily. Not all of the meat I eat is organic or grass-fed, but I don't purchase obvious CAFO meat. Everything I get is from the butcher, who definitely gets decent quality stuff. I imagine my meat is higher in omega-6s than the stuff in Whole Foods. I consume well-prepared grains regularly and nuts once in a while, which are also not exactly beneficial towards a 1:1 ratio. I don't go out of my way to consume more fish than I crave for the O3s. I enjoy fish, but I'm not going to be eating it daily. Sometimes I don't even eat it once a week. I wish I could eat more fermented fish, but in order for that to happen I'd need to find extremely fresh fish that hasn't been frozen which isn't common where I live.
How many of you make the o3:o6 a focal point of your diet? Do you guys go out of your way to improve the ratio? Have you noticed any difference in a ratio of 1:2, 1:4, 1:6, etc? I haven't. I feel wonderful eating my current omega ratio and all of the inflammatory issues I had at one point are still gone (swollen hot earlobes, swollen tongue and breakouts.)
I don't follow mine, or care. That said I still care more that my meat be clean and grass fed cow than what my veggies are. I eat more meat.
I just assume my ratios are good since I eat paleo.
I certainly don't focus on it, and I've stopped supplementing it as well.
For n-3s: I do go out of my way to eat half a pound of wild caught salmon a week, and it isn't uncommon for me to eat a couple cans of sardines, tuna, or salmon throughout the week.
On the n-6 side of things: I eat a pound of bacon a week, and my meat is not grass-fed - but it is fresh and local from a butcher I trust; I've never (even when I was buying frozen grass-fed meat) had meat of this quality, despite the fact that it isn't strictly pastured. I also eat an avocado a day.
I cook with goat butter and coconut oil, I do not eat nuts on any regular basis, and I try to opt for grilled meats when I eat out (don't always succeed.)
Overall, yeah, I've come to the same conclusion. My inflammation is more controlled than it has ever been before, and I generally feel great. Micro-managing leads me down detrimental roads; I make adjustments when my body tells me I need to.
It's all theory that paleolithic peoples had good omega-6:3 ratios. Except for seafood, animals are, for the most part, omega-6 rich. Plants are also generally omega-6 rich. I cannot understand how a very low (1:1) omega ratio was concluded as paleolithic. Do your damnedest to cut out seed oils and eat whole foods, a ratio of 5:1 is reasonable. Grass-fed beef is not an omega-3 rich food, contrary to popular belief. And what's the likelihood that paleolithic peoples only ate ruminants and seafood? Not pork, not fowl (you know, those omega-6 rich foods)?
I achieved a nearly 1:1 ratio with a hefty supplementation schedule. But now, having giving it some thought, think a ratio of less than 10:1 is perfectly fine without supplementation.
I take issue with the arbitrary %ages on PUFA calories as well. If you are to believe that paleolithic peoples obtained a majority of their calories from animal product, then PUFA limits also seem dubious. The only way to justify such low PUFA numbers would be to conclude that paleolithic peoples were primarily fueled by starches.
If I don't eat seafood that day, I will supplement with 1000 mg o3.
I can't always afford grass-fed meat, but I will always get grass-fed ground beef and liver. Ribeyes, NY strip, skirt, etc. are usually not grass-fed. The lamb I buy is always New Zealand grass-fed.
I rarely eat poultry. I don't even want to eat poultry. But when I do, I make sure it's free-range.
My eggs are always cage-free, omega-3, soy-free.
My bacon/pork is always organic.
I only use olive oil for cold uses. I cook everything in either organic unrefined coconut oil or grass-fed butter/ghee.
*Edit: I eat raw macadamia nuts and almonds a few times a week.
At the end of the day, it's a hassle keeping track of my o3:o6 ratio, but I predict it's a little skewed on the o6 side. It is enough for me to know that with Paleo, it's much better than someone on SAD.
There are only so many hours in a day.
What with all the hunting and gathering, meat preservation and preparation, berry picking and reading there's no time left for another distraction.
Tweaking O3/O6 sounds less rewarding than eating fresh oysters. Or reading Paleohacks.
I eat fish once or twice or week and don't do chicken or pork very often, so those kind of balance out. Most of the time it's grass-fed beef, butter, heavy cream, coconut oil, eggs twice a week, and hardly any nuts. My ratio was around 1:4 to 1:6 last time I checked.
I tried to eat just beef and fish for a month, but ended up craving chicken again, which is interesting because I had actually gotten really bored with it. A similar thing happens when I lay off the pork completely, so I have some bacon or ribs every now and then.
My guess is there must be some other good stuff in birds and pigs that my body needs as well.
It also makes me feel really awesome to gnaw meat right off the bone.
As long as you avoid processed crap, you're ahead of the game. As for me, pastured everything... eggs, beef & bird. My one vice is nuts, so I do supplement a small amount of fish oil & FCLO. My gut feeling is that avoiding/minimizing N-6 is equally important as grain/added sugar avoidance, & perhaps even more so. I'm 53 and have zero issues with inflammation of any kind.
I eat a pound of seafood everyday. I definitely don't worry about my ratios...
But why wonder at all. Get tested. It's easy.
I eat alot of Omega 3s (lately i have been eating alot of wild salmon heads, tons of different nutrients), so i sometimes make sure to get enough omega 6s too. I eat some extra eggs, avocados etc. But other than that i dont worry about it.
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