Meet Omega-7 - The New "Kid" on the Block
Make way for omega-7. It is the latest powerhouse Smart Fat, which someday may rival coconut in popularity. Studies from Harvard, The Cleveland Clinic, Hawaii, and Japan have suggested that omega-7 is a force to be reckoned with. This awesome omega can be found in its most biologically available form in anchovies, while sea buckthorn is the highest source of a vegan omega-7. Macadamia nuts and macadamia nut oil are not far behind. Research suggests that anchovies or their highly purified, pharmaceutical oil may be your best bet of all.
According to some rather compelling studies, this previously unrecognized omega ignites effortless weight loss even more than comparable omega-3s. Out of 400 fatty acids studied for regulating lipid metabolism, omega-7 was the most active. Omega-7 dramatically improves heart health and insulin sensitivity and reduces a fatty liver.
In fact, when researchers from Harvard observed omega-7 interact with fat cells in a petri dish, they found that omega-7 acts like a fat burning signaling agent to fat cells-which can become inactivated because of age, stress, or environmental toxins.
It elevates satiety hormones over 25 percent and can decrease food intake almost as much. Stubborn fat doesn't have a chance now that omega-7 has arrived!
This one-of-a-kind fatty acid also quells cellular inflammation. While this is a benefit not unlike other omegas, the results of omega-7 supplementation make the others pale in comparison. Inflammatory markers like C-reactive protein can fall within 30 days by nearly 75 percent. Now that's something to write about!
Besides revving up fat burning, purified Omega-7 has an impressive reputation for also reducing levels of fat and triglycerides in the blood, which make it such a boon for cardiovascular conditions.
In one month-long study, test participants who supplemented with 210 mg of purified omega-7 per day demonstrated a moderate increase in the "good" HDL cholesterol, a drop in the "bad" LDL cholesterol, and a nearly 20 percent decrease in triglycerides.
Smart Tips: Omega-7s
So how can you add the rising superstar omega-7 into your diet?
- 1. Aim for anchovies. They pack big flavor into a tiny fish. You can use anchovies to add flavor to sauces, salad dressings, pasta and soups. Anchovies are filled with omega-3s, which lower inflammation, as well as boost metabolism. Anchovies are also the fish with the least amount of mercury that are safe to consume. Check out my Party Pate recipe to see how to creatively hide the strong taste of anchovies into a yummy dip. Oh and don't forget that a traditional Caesar salad dressing is typically made with anchovies, too.
- 2. Buddy up with Barlean's Heart Remedy Oil. Just one teaspoon of Barlean's delicious berry flavored oil contains the study-backed dose of 210 mg of purified omega-7. This oil can be creatively used in no-cook recipes like vinaigrettes, parfaits, and pies. Who would ever guess that it contains purified anchovy oil?
- 3. Munch on macadamias and cook with macadamia nut oil. Macadamias are seriously satisfying and a small amount goes a long way. These were the nuts that my late friend, Dr. Robert Atkins used to nibble on when he was in his office, his radio show on WOR, or on an airplane.
The macadamia nut oil will fire up your metabolism while packing an amazingly rich taste at the same time. This oil can stand serious heat, up to 400 degrees F, and serves up considerably more antioxidants than any other cooking oil I know of. It is great for making popcorn or stir-frying some veggies, all the while helping you achieve your weight loss goals.
- 4. Shore up with sea buckthorn seed oil. This exotic oil can be taken as a dietary supplement in softgels or in liquid form to boost metabolism. Well known in China, Russia, and Europe as one of nature's most incredible healers, sea buckthorn has the highest source of natural carotenoids like beta-carotene and zeaxanthin, lycopene and lutein. It is exceptionally high in medicinal antioxidants. Used topically, sea buckthorn oil can aid mouth ulcers, rosacea, eczema, and burns. It has widespread applicability for gastrointestinal health by reducing inflammation. In general, it is a powerful collagen enhancer and heals skin by calming down redness.
Butter - The Better Margarine Substitute
Butter sure is better-but ideally should be from grass-fed or better still, pasture-raised animals. Butter derived from these cows is much higher in nutrients than butter from grain-fed cows raised in conventional feedlots. The grains used in feedlots are typically corn-based and are spliced with genetically modified organisms (GMO). The cows stockpile toxins and pesticides like dioxin in the fat tissue. Therefore, when you consume non-organic grain-fed dairy, you are likely dining on pesticides and herbicides from the cow's feed.
Grass-fed assures you that the cows at least have not been fed grains-which reduces the probability of GMOs-a good thing. Organic butter that is pasture-raised is the highest in nutrients because it means that pesticides have not contaminated the soil the grass is grown in.
With organic pastured butter, you will be getting the purest natural source of CLA-which is also contained in higher quantities in cream from organic pastured cows. So, while you enjoy the delicious taste of butter in your food, you are also ingesting one very stable Smart Fat that holds up well in the frying pan or in the fridge. Its rich CLA stores will target your tummy fat while preserving lean muscle mass.
This "X Factor" Smart Fat is the ideal substitute for just about all transfat laden kinds of margarine and shortening, which clog up arteries, accelerate aging, may cause cancer and block vegetable oils from converting into metabolism raising prostaglandins.
When I dropped the "butter is better" bombshell with the publication of my first book in 1988, most people were still in disbelief. They were so thoroughly indoctrinated with the anti-fat message of the decade. I distinctly remember one particular lecture in my hometown of West Hartford, Connecticut. When I began explaining how the transfats in margarine could create heart disease and even cancer over time, you could have heard a pin drop in the room of 350 women. They were visibly shaken. No wonder, the audience were all members of my mother's Hadassah group and were Jewish women who never mixed meat with butter at a meal because of kosher dietary laws. Margarine was a staple on their dining tables-as it was in my home for nearly 30 years!
In case any of you need more convincing than the Time magazine cover story, below are other great reasons to include pastured butter into your diet:
Butter, like other saturates including cream, is needed for energy storage, to cushion organs against shock and to insulate vital tissues against the cold. The body's capacity for energy storage in the form of fat cells is an evolutionary marvel. Nature in her infinite wisdom provides extra protection for women for childbearing and nursing by storing extra reserves in their buttocks and thighs.
Butter is filled with the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K2. The "mysterious X factor" first identified by Dr. Weston Price over fifty years ago in the diets of indigenous people has now been identified decades later as the fat-soluble K2, so important for proper calcium utilization and the prevention of cancer, osteopenia, osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. Since fat-soluble vitamins can be missing from the diet without enough bile production, having butter as a handy whole food source of supplementation is more than good news.
Butter contains healthy saturated fats, which raise HDL (good) cholesterol, and lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. Remember that the latest studies have confirmed there is no association between consuming saturated fats and developing heart disease.
Butter contains a mix of the short and medium chain fatty acids (MCTs) that are so high in coconut oil. This means that these types of saturated fats can also bypass bile emulsification-good news for those without a gallbladder or who have had troubles digesting fats.
Butter lowers your risk of obesity. Over the past several decades Americans have been told to use low-fat dairy products to get calcium without all the "bad" fats and high calorie count. However, eating high-fat dairy products will NOT make you fat. A recent study looked at the role of high-fat dairy on obesity and metabolic disease. Their findings proved that high-fat dairy lowers your risk of metabolic disease while reducing your risk of obesity.Smart Tips: Butter
How do you increase butter in your diet to enhance weight loss and wellbeing?
- 1. Opt for organic pastured butter-or just organic if it is not available-in place of margarine. Use it in your favorite recipes, stir a teaspoon into your morning coffee, melt it on veggies, baked potatoes or yams, gluten and/or grain-free breads, muffins and crackers. Truly, I can't think of a single food that is not improved with the addition of a pat of butter.
- 2. Allergic to dairy? Try ghee. Ghee is a clarified form of butter that retains all the health benefits of butter but has the casein and other milk proteins removed which can cause an allergic reaction. Ghee is used in India and many eastern cultures for high heat cooking and has far more flavor and nutrients than traditional butter. Use ghee in curries, soups and especially stir-fry's because of its high smoke point.
Summing it up
Metabolism can be sabotaged by a number of sneaky factors that can derail your weight loss efforts. These saboteurs include your thyroid; a lack of essential fats that turn jiggly white fat into slimming brown fat (adipose tissue), or even scrambled cellular communication. In all of these cases, Smart Fats can help to reset metabolism. Identifying intolerant foods that block weight loss is another key component to addressing cravings and food addiction. But probably none of this compares to the devastating impact of unrelenting stress that you will meet head-on in next month's article--all of which you can take control of.
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS
Visionary health expert Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS, has always been a trendsetter. With millions of followers nationwide, she has the uncanny ability to pinpoint major health concerns and provide solutions years ahead of anybody else.
Highly respected as the grande dame of alternative health and award-winning author of 30 books, she single-handedly launched the weight loss/detox revolution in her New York Times bestseller The Fat Flush Plan. A Connecticut College and Teachers College, Columbia University graduate, Dr. Ann Louise was recognized as one of the top ten nutritionists in the country by Self magazine and was the recipient of the American Medical Writers Association award for excellence. She has been a popular columnist for First magazine since 2003.