Anxiety & Cod Liver Oil

By: Dr. St Jean

Imagine you could reduce your anxiety, one shot of cod liver oil at a time! This statement should come as no surprise, especially if you have followed me for some time now.  I often speak about the importance of healthy fat intake and anxiety.

You are probably aware that fats have been demonized over the last few decades.  This has generally translated into a reduction in overall fat intake.  However recently the tides have changed a bit.  The immense amounts of research pouring out on the topic have in a way forced mainstream media to jump on board with healthy fats being healthy for you.

The goods news is this translates into the general public consuming more of these healthy fats and hopefully in turn, increasing their overall health.

Why are Fats So Good For You?

The truth is healthy fats are incredible for your health.  In most other parts of the modern world, fat is a welcomed staple at the dinner table.  But why not in the United States?  The key is to realize that not all fat’s are made the same – and if you want to experience the health benefits from consuming fats, you better pick the healthy ones!

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Examples of healthy sources of fat include avocados, organic grass-fed butter and ghee, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil and of course the omega-3’s from salmon, sardines, chia and flaxseeds and even high quality cuts of grass-fed meat.

Healthy fats are vital for your nervous system and brain health, the proper functioning of your hormonal system, and many other crucial physiological processes in your body.  If you are ready to take the next step and work with me directly to identify and eliminate the root causes of your anxiety, click here to schedule your free consult!

How do fats relate to Anxiety?

anxiety, anxiety symptoms, anxiety relief, anxiety treatment chicago, Dr St JeanIn addition to the wealth of research supporting healthy fat consumption in association with an increase in overall health, there is also ample research supporting fat intake and improvement in mood and emotional health.

One study specifically found individuals who consumed higher percentages of their calories from fat (41% of calories to be specific) had less anxiety, anger and better overall mood.  This is just one study, there are several others that link increased healthy fat consumption and a reduction in anxiety.

The Sad Truth

It’s unfortunate but I see it almost every day in my practice, it’s quite common for patients with anxiety to have low levels of healthy fats in their diet.  Meaning they are not eating enough healthy fat!  This translates directly into less than ideal levels of these important fatty acids in their blood stream.

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I’ve also noticed many of these patients also have gastrointestinal compromise – typically in the form of inflammation from food allergies, infections, etc.  This also can lead to malabsorption issues and therefore further complicates their ability to acquire adequate amounts of healthy fats.

There are many healthy fats to discuss when it comes to anxiety, but the two I want to focus on here is EPA and DHA.  These are both considered omega-3 fatty acids and have baeen strongly linked to brain health.

Ideally you would consume foods high in these omega-3 fatty acids such as fish, marine life and eggs to name a few.  However there are times, especially in acute situations when patients can benefit from supplementation.  It is for this reason, I bring up Cod Liver Oil.

Why Cod Liver Oil?

Like I said, ideally you would consume these omega-3 fatty acids from real food, but sometimes your body needs that extra boost from a nutrient perspective – especially in acute situations when anxiety symptoms are intensified.

Cod Liver Oil is a great option for increasing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids quickly and efficiently.  One of the reasons I love to use it for my patients and this might be due to the fact that I practice in the midwest, but several patients do not like seafood.  Therefore, for us to increase the levels of DHA and EPA, we need to find an alternative solution.  This is a great alternative, as it allows these individuals to get the nutrients they need without compromising their preferences.

anxiety, anxiety symptoms, anxiety relief, anxiety treatment chicago, Dr St JeanIn addition, the EPA and DHA are highly bioavailable and potent in Carlson’s Cod Liver Oil.  Therefore, if you are in fact presenting with lower than ideal levels of omega-3 fatty acids, this is a great temporary solution to amping up your levels while simultaneously increasing your dietary intake and addressing any gut related issues you may have.

You can find this definitely at WholeFoods, but you will pay for a 16oz bottle $54.99.  Or, you can go to my wellness store at www.drstjean.com and have the product delivered to your door for only $39.90.

However you get your hands on it, if you have anxiety this is a great addition to your regimen.  Once you have it in your possession, grab a shot glass or a teaspoon.  If you are already consuming seafood, eggs, etc., then start with 1 teaspoon/day and go from there. If you are not eating any of the foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids in them, then start with 1 teaspoon at breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Personally, I enjoy doing this before bed to give my brain that extra boost of nutrients before my body transitions into the repair and regeneration mode while I’m sleeping.  If you want to learn more about anxiety and how you can overcome it naturally using functional medicine and nutrition, check out the video blog and podcasts on my website: www.drstjean.com.  Or, if you are ready to take the next step and work with me directly to identify and eliminate the root causes of your anxiety, click here to schedule your free consult!