Vitamin A & D: Fermented Fish Oil

The debate goes on concerning the reliability of fish oil as a good source of vitamin A and D. Claims often assert that the vitamin A in fish oil can be toxic, while others feel the opposite. Many of the great historical cultures had one sacred food which they relied on to ensure strong mind, body, and spirit: Fermented fish/fish liver oil. Whether it was the Roman Soldier who was given a daily ration of fermented fish oil, or the Scandinavian Viking that had a drum of fermenting cod livers outside the door of his home, fish oil has long been considered a source for good health. Even grandma always had a bottle of cod liver oil in the back cupboard. Vitamins A and D levels for these fish oils vary widely depending on methodology, lab and batch. Fish oil, especially the one obtained from liver such as the cod liver oil, is a rich source of Vitamin A and Vitamin D. However, excessive dosage of cod liver oil can lead to Vitamin toxicity, accumulation of excessive vitamins in the body, which can cause side effects. A 1995 study that showed cod liver oil having negative effects, from which governmental policy has been derived, has been largely criticized by researchers for overstating the negative effects. The most likely culprits for negative results in the study are topical and oral vitamin A analogs, not cod liver oil. Only 1.4 percent of the people in the study took supplements exceeding 10,000 IU a day, not a large enough sample from which to draw conclusions. However, it is important to never combine cod liver oil or vitamin A from supplements with oral or topical medications for acne or other skin disorders treated with retinoic acid derivatives. Researchers at Weston Price recommended 2 table spoons of your standard cod liver oil daily. Too much use of cod liver oil, or any other natural remedy can be toxic, and therefore should be avoided.

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