Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Facts About Omega 6 Oils & Omega 3 Oils

It is now well acknowledged and documented fact that there is a rise in obesity, metabolic syndrome, heart disease and type II diabetes in last few decades.

Generation ago, human beings lived on a diet of meat, vegetables, fruits which have Omega 6 to Omega 3 ration of approximately 1:1. Omega 6 in nature is found in egg yolk, red meat and dairy products. Omega 3 is found in oily fish such as salmon, herring, sardines and trout, flaxseed and walnuts.

However these days, as more and more Asians adopt a western diet which typically consists of fast food, processed foods, and Omega 6 rich vegetables such as sunflower oil, corn oil, soybean oil) we are now consuming excessive Omega 6 on daily basis. While our consumption of fish oil which is high in Omega 3 has dropped as our daily diet of fish has decreased. This imbalance in Omega 6: Omega 3 ratio has led to an increase in obesity, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, inflammatory diseases such as psoriasis, arthritis and many more.

American fast food diet of processed cheese, processed meat, and processed refined oils diet can be as high as 15:1 to 16:1 ration of Omega 6 and Omega 3 .Even as individuals go on a low fat diet, they continue to eat the same ratio of Omega 6 : Omega 3 thus, they have difficulty losing weight, lowering their cholesterol levels and see no improvement in inflammatory diseases.



Historically, Asian diets which have consisted mainly of cooking with Coconut Oil and Mediterranean diets which are high in Olive oil , have all had much better overall population health statistics of heart diseases and obesity. It is only in the recent few decades with globalization, we started to consume processed Omega 6 polyunsaturated oils, and we saw a parallel increases in obesity and metabolic syndrome.

Processed Vegetable Oils

*   Are very unstable and easily damaged by heat, light and oxygen.

*   Easily oxidized and turn stale and rancid.

*   Often damaged during the manufacturing process by heat generated in the process itself. This method is still used due to cheaper costs of manufacturing.

*   damaged again when used to manufacture fast food, processed food, etc

*   The imbalance caused due to such excess consumption of Omega 6 oils in our diet has increased that it is causing the rise in heart diseases, obesity and other lifestyle diseases. 

Virgin Coconut oils

 * contains more than 65% of medium chain fatty acids

* medium chain fatty acids are  smaller molecules therefore are easily digested and used by our body to produce energy similar to carbohydrates and are not circulated in the bloodstream unlike other fats. Does not get stored in rat cells  hence does not contribute to weight gain

*Medium chain fatty acids of Virgin coconut oil are resistant to oxidation and does not get rapidly altered by free radicals during heating and cooking. Hence do not create oxidized LDL cholesterol fats which is more toxic to our body than LDL cholesterol.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Hair - Care today or loss tomorrow!!!

Everybody gets nervous with complaints of 'hair loss'. They try all sorts of treatments that are advertised in print as well as electronic media. Costly therapies and treatments are recommended, even with highly potent medicines such as Corticosteroids and Minoxidil and other such tonics for as long as two years. No long term benefits, but many end up with side effects.

Hair fall is a serious matter and hair loss at early age is the new generation's problem. Stress, wrong food habits, use of too much chemical colors, shampoo, detergents etc have created an imbalance in the body, result of which is hair loss. After falling of one hair, a new hair arises from the follicle near the root and hair grows at the rate of 15 cm per year. If the follicles near the hair roots are dead then it is very difficult to revive them. Daily care starting from early age can help postpone the progress towards baldness, Scalp irritations, dandruff etc should be treated immediately.

There are many reasons for hair fall, internal as well as external. Hormonal imbalance, stress, anxiety, anaemia, dieting, stomach problems such as acidity, constipation are some of the internal problems, while improper use of soaps & shampoos, hair colors, excessive styling and bonding, exposure to harsh chemicals, sun, pollution, sweat etc. are some of the external factors.

Inculcate right hair care routine right from childhood. Our Indian system of oiling the hair is one of the best natural remedy and hair care. Oil massage nourishes the scalp and strengthens the roots by increasing blood circulation to the hair follicles thus encouraging hair growth. In case of excessive oily scalp, one can reduce the contact time of the oil to the scalp and wash with good pH balance shampoo. During adolescence oil massage hair & scalp at least once a week with warm oil, leave overnight (preferably) or at least one hour and wash. In case of using colors and chemical treatments, make sure you massage scalp gently so that the hair which is already damaged and becomes delicate is not damaged further. Avoid strong shampoos and conditioning masks. Nourish the scalp with herbal hair packs according to hair types. Space colorings & touch ups once in fortnight only. Leaving chemical colors too long than recommended on the pack will damage the hair and disturb the pH balance of the scalp. It can affect eyes, skin and health adversely.

Men should wash hair everyday with gentle pH balance shampoo. Oil massage once a week will relax the scalp, mind & body. Avoid colors with PPDA more than 0.5% to 1%. Baldness can not be avoided if it is hereditary but yes it can be postponed with proper hair care, diet and reducing stress in life.