Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Can hemp oil replace fish oil in the human diet?

By Dionne Payn
Source: HempLifestyleMagazine.com

You've probably heard about how good omega-3 and 6 fatty acids are
for human health. The common advice is that to get a good supply in
your diet you need to eat oily fish on a regular basis. 

Not many people know that hemp is a fantastic source of omega-3 and
6 fatty acids. But can hemp replace fish oil in the diet? Before we
get into that, let me start by giving you the lowdown on why these
fatty acids are important for good health.

What are essential fatty acids anyway?

Alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) is an omega-3 fatty acid and is known as
an 'essential' fatty acid. Our bodies can't make it so we need to
consume it through the food we eat. Our bodies convert ALA to the
longer chain fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and
docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).

EPA and DHA are very important for good health. They are powerful
anti-inflammatory compounds, which is beneficial as inflammation is
the cause of many degenerative diseases. EPA & DHA also lower blood
pressure and blood triglycerides which can reduce the risk of
strokes and heart disease. 

Linoleic acid (LA) is an essential omega-6 fatty acid and is the
precursor to gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). We get plenty of omega-6
fatty acids in our diet from sources such as cooking oils (soybean,
sunflower, and canola oil), poultry and eggs. 

The problem is that our intake of omega-3 fatty acids is too low,
yet our intake of omega-6 fatty acids is too high. The typical
Western diet has an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio of 15:1 but the
recommended ratio is 3:1. In a number of clinical studies, patients
with diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and asthma have reduced
their symptoms just by eating the correct balance of omega-6 to

The general advice is to consume more oily fish such as mackerel,
salmon & sardines, or take supplements that contain concentrated
amounts EPA & DHA. But what if you don't want to eat fish or take
fish oil supplements?

The problem with fish and fish oils

There are a few issues to consider when deciding to consume fish or
fish oils. Firstly, there is the human health aspect. Our oceans
are polluted with methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB's)
and dioxins, and these contaminants are found in fish. Fish that
are predatory (eat other fish) are large and at the top of the food
chain, and so tend to contain more toxins. 

Governments around the world are advising pregnant and
breastfeeding women to limit the amount of fish they eat as mercury
can cause harm to unborn babies or young children. 
For the general population, the medical consensus is that the
benefits of eating fish far outweigh the risk to human health from
these toxins. However to be on the safe side, many people choose to
avoid fish and fish oil supplements altogether.

Then there is the environmental issue. In 2010, Time Magazine
published an article which asked the question, "Is the fatty-acid
craze threatening our ecosystem?" They made the point that the
market for omega-3 supplements doubled to $1 billion US dollars
between 2006 - 2010. 

Environmentalists feared that menhaden, a small filter feeding
species of fish, were being overfished to produce fish oil
supplements. This led to 13 out of 15 Atlantic States banning the
fish oil company that caught 90% of the fish from their waters. 

Fish oil companies strenuously deny that they are having an effect
on declining fish stocks arguing that only 1% of fish catch is used
for making supplements. However, a Canadian research group argued
that the recommended dose of 100 mg of fish oils per day was not
sustainable and would lead to fish stocks collapsing by the middle
of the 21st century. 

Then there is the question of whether it is ethical to kill fish
for food or fish oil. The Vegetarian Society's website states that: 

"Fish have a nervous system and pain receptors like all other
animals" and "an estimated 23% of that total catch is killed and
discarded as a result of 'incidental capture".

So if you choose not to eat fish or use fish oils, where do you get
your beneficial omega-3 fatty acids?

Plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids
Because eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
are only found in oily fish, a lot of research has focused on how
much alpha linoleic acid (ALA) can be found in plants. 

By far, the best source of ALA is flax seed (over 50%), followed by
hemp (15-20%), walnut (14%), canola (11%) and soy (7%). While ALA
can be converted to EPA & DHA in the body, the conversion between
ALA to EPA is not very efficient; even in healthy people it is only

The reason for this is that ALA has to be converted to a fatty acid
called stearidonic acid (SDA) before it can be converted to EPA. 
The enzyme responsible for this conversion is very inefficient and
this effect is worse in the elderly, people suffering from diabetes
or obesity, and people that have a high omega-6 intake.

The good news is that if you take SDA directly, the conversion to
EPA is much easier, which hasn't gone unnoticed by big
Agri-companies. Monsanto have cottoned onto this (excuse the pun)
and have genetically modified the soya bean to produce SDA, while
BASF is working on genetically modifying canola to do the same. 

Thankfully for us, hemp is a natural source of SDA and we don't
have to resort to GM foods to get a plant based source of our

Hemp is one of the few sources of a rare omega-6 fatty acid,
gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). GLA has a similar chemistry to EPA and
has many of the health benefits of EPA. 
Ideal dosages

According to the Good Oil Website, a daily dose of 1 tablespoons of
hemp oil will gove you 94% of your recommended daily allowance of
omega-3 and 94% of your recommended daily allowance of omega-6
fatty acids.

A comparison of flax and hemp oil

As I mentioned before, flax contains more ALA than hemp, but does
not contain SDA. Many people that try flax oil find it has a strong
aftertaste which can be a bit off-putting. Flax oil also has a
short shelf life, needs to be used as quickly as possible after
pressing and should be kept in the freezer, otherwise it turns

In comparison, hemp contains linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha
linoleic acid (omega-3) in the optimum 3:1 ratio for human health
and it has a pleasant nutty taste. It does need to be kept
refrigerated to preserve the quality of the oil, but is more robust
and doesn't go off as quickly as flax oil.


Omega-3 & 6 fatty acids are important for our health and longevity,
and it is great to know that we aren't restricted to consuming fish
or fish oils to get our recommended dose. If you want to avoid fish
for ethical reasons, hemp is a fantastic alternative.




  1. Wow!! i am very impressed with your lovely post.. i am so glad to left comment on this..This has been a so interesting read, would love to read more here....
    Hemp Oil 

    1. I am unable to read articles online very often, but I’m glad I did today. This is very well written and your points are well-expressed. Please, don’t ever stop writing. topdog cbd

  2. mark

    Cannabis oil is really wonderful and effective because i used it on my Son who had been suffering from Leukemia for almost three years. i never actual believed in it till i watched a documentary and read some testimonies of patients who gave credit to the oil after using it and particularly to simpsoncannabisoilcarecenter@customercare. who supplied them the oil. i am a living testimony to cannabis oil from a genuine source. You can save more lives today by the usage of cannabis oil medication via; simpsoncannabisoilcarecenter@gmail.com.
    Mark Carl.

  3. Hey! I can,t believe this. A great testimony that i must share to all cancer patient in the world i never believed that their could be any complete cure for lung cancer or any cancer,i saw people testimony on blog sites of how Dr Brown Nelson cannabis oil brought them back to life again. i had to try it too and you can,t believe that in just few weeks i started using it all my pains stop gradually and i had to leave without the drugs the doctor gave to me. Right now i can tell you that few months now i have not had any pain, and i have just went for text last week and the doctor confirmed that there is no trace of any cancer system. Glory be to God for leading me to this genuine to Dr Brown Nelson. I am so happy as i am sharing this testimony. My advice to you all who thinks that their is no cure for cancer that is Not true ,just contact him and get cannabis oil from Dr Brown Nelson to your cancer and you will be free and free for ever, Try it and you will not regret it because it truly works. One thing i have come to realize is that you never know how true it is until you try. There is no harm in trying. Remember, delay in treatment leads to death. Here is his email:(brownnelson07@aol.com)Contact him and be free from cancer!

  4. hemp oil is probably the best oil in the world ( https://cbd-vape-oil.myshopify.com )

  5. Great information. Carry on bro. I am working as a content writer , so your articles will help me to write my next project. I am printing this page.thank you.
    Zuly Zonova
    Owner of http://pickbestfishoil.com/

  6. I want to appreciate Doctor oria for curing me of cancer with his cannabis oil, i was at the point of death until i found a testimony of his good works,now am happy with joy in my heart to share this good news that am living a cancer free life. for my major purpose is to inform those that are in need of cannabis oil to cure their cancer to contact this great healer, Doctor Oria via email on oriacannabis@yahoo.com and be cancer free just as i am. am so grateful god brought you to me Doctor Oria.I really appreciate you and thanks alots for curing my cancer.

  7. Interesting blog and very amazing detail about the green roads cbd oil well done keep it up.
    green roads cbd oil

  8. Such a nice blog and i appreciate your all efforts about the juvederm wholesale it's really good work. well done.
    juvederm wholesale

  9. Interesting blog all information are very important for me about the Genuine By Anthony and i really need it thank you.
    Genuine By Anthony

  10. Such an amazing blog about the salida vape shop and I really appreciate you work which you have done well.
    salida vape shop

  11. Interesting blog all information are very important for me about the Hollistic medicine and i really need it thank you.
    Hollistic medicine

  12. Really very interesting and very valuable information about the naked salt nicotine well done.
    naked salt nicotine

  13. You have some honest ideas about the Vape Pens share here I really get many information and discovered most peoples will agree with your blog.
    Kratom Vape Pens

  14. Very informative article which is about the extraction and i must bookmark it, keep posting interesting articles.

  15. I read that Post and got it fine and informative. top dog cbd

  16. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well..

  17. I got many new and latest information about the vape pen and CBD well done.
    hemp oil for pain relief

  18. Thanks for a wonderful share. Your article has proved your hard work and experience you have got in this field. Brilliant .i love it reading. CBD Oil Drops

  19. I am so thankful to read this article and for Dr Flootsnoot that literally brought me back from the dead with his cannibis oil. I had died from cancer and was just about to be embalmed when the mortician accidentally injected me with Dr Flootsnoot's oil. I came back alive and sat up on the table as healthy as can be. Glory be to God for leading me to Dr Flootsnoot. Also, you can purchase Dr Flootsnoot oil at all 7-11 stores. It cures all diseases.

  20. Thank you so much for sharing informative blog.CBD oil is the future of medicine as it brings many benefits for health. Hope you continue to share more of your ideas.I will definitely love to read. Keep up the good work! Hemp Supplement

  21. Thanks for sharing such an informative blog with us. Visit here for more infomation Cerebral Technologies

  22. But will Hemp Oil give you as much DHA as fish oil? If so, how much hemp oil would you need to take daily to equal the DHA daily dose of fish oil?

  23. Visit our website today to place an order for our harp seal oil. This oil is completely natural. It undergoes minimal processing. You therefore don’t have to worry about the effects of additives and other chemicals.

  24. Kan jeg ta CBD hamp olje mens jeg er lamitisk for angst?
    Et av stoffene som muligens vil samhandle med CBD.
    Cbd Hamp Olje kan hemme cytokrom P450-systemets evne til å metabolisere bestemte stoffer, noe som fører til en generell økning i behandlingstidene.
    Interessant er CBD ikke alene i sin effekt på stoffet metabolisme.
    Når CYP450-systemet påvirkes på denne måten, fører det til høyere nivåer av visse stoffer i systemet ditt på en gang. Dette kan forårsake uønskede bivirkninger, og noen ganger en overdose som kan være skadelig.
    Hvis du tar medisiner som påvirkes av cannabidiol, bør du kontakte legen din for å forsikre deg om at det er trygt for deg å supplere din personlig pleierutine med CBD. Derfra kan de to av dere vurdere å justere doseringen på medisinene dine slik at du kan bruke begge produktene trygt.

  25. Nicely presented information in this post, I prefer to read this kind of stuff. The quality of content is fine and the conclusion is good. Thanks for the post.
    Cannabis CBD Oil UK

  26. This comment has been removed by the author.

  27. How do you extract hemp oil from seeds?
    There’s two types of hemp seed oil: Refined and Unrefined.

    Unrefined oil is extracted typically through a process called “Cold-pressed”. When you press seeds for Cbd Hemp Oil , the temperature rises from the heat that’s produced from the friction caused by pressing and grinding. When the heat rises too high, this makes the oil lose a lot of its value. By cold pressing, presses are required to maintain a much lower temperature (less than 120 degrees Fahrenheit), which ensures that the oil retains the flavor, aroma, and nutritional value of the seed. That is why unrefined cold-pressed hemp maintains a green color, smells nutty, and contains all sorts of nutrition.

    Unrefined oil also means that the oil has not been bleached or deodorized. A lot of unrefined oils are also called “virgin”, “extra virgin”, “raw”, or “pure”. This also means that unrefined oil has a much shorter shelf life and the oil can start smelling odd when it gets closer to its expiration date.

    Refined oil, on the other hand, has been bleached and/or deodorized. It’s also pressed in a much higher temperature than unrefined oil. That is why refined oil has a much longer shelf life. This is mainly because refined oil is mainly used in body care products (soap, lotion, etc.).