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cod liver (A/D mercola controversy) question - Page 3

post #41 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllyRae View Post
Maybe I'm missing something, but Mercola said that Carlsons CLO was just fine not too long ago. Has he changed his mind on it? Before, he was saying that was the only brand he'd recommend...
I remember this too but this recommendation must have been over two years ago, when I switched to Krill Oil just to be on the safe side.

If I recall correctly he said that Carlson's CLO was close to the ideal ratio of vitamin A to D.

But in his latest article he goes one step further from the discussion we have above (synthetic vs non-synthetic vitamins) and says that we should not supplement at all with Vitamin A as it inhibits the absorption of Vitamin D, which regards to be so crucial for the human body.

He has also changed his multivitamins recently (which contain Vitamin D3) and replaced Vitamin A (retinol form) with beta-carotene.
post #42 of 74
Welp, the WAPF responded already. They just sent me the link to Chris Masterjohn's response to Mercola's recent article.

I wonder if Kathy, the office manager at WAPF, even read my email? Maybe I missed it, but I didn't see our questions addressed in Chris's article (which is a fabulous response to Mercola's article.)
post #43 of 74
Thread Starter 
This was one of the things my rep at NN sent me in regards to the Mercola controversy. Meta---I'm PMing you with her email address so you can forward your letter to her specifically. She would know more than just the standard customer service rep there, I would think.
-------------------------------------------------------------------
A commentary entitled "Cod Liver Oil, Vitamin A Toxicity, Frequent Respiratory Infections, and the Vitamin D Deficiency Epidemic" ( Cannell et al) has been in circulation these last few weeks of 2008, and has generated some concern.

The commentary, which is the considered opinion of several medical professionals, seeks to emphasize the authors' belief that supplementation of Vitamin D is urgently needed to address widespread nutritional deficiencies. The authors have also a concern, based on 2 studies on rats and one epidemiological/population study but no replicated human trials, that Vitamin A interferes with the body's use of Vitamin D.

Given those twin concerns, the authors express great reservation about sourcing Vitamin D from Cod Liver Oil. Their advice is that "manufacturers should properly balance Vitamin D with Vitamin A in fortified foods and dietary supplements, although at this time it is unclear what the ratio should be” (emphasis added).

Not all health professionals agree on desired supplement ranges for A or D or the combination of the two. Ultimately this becomes a decision for each individual to discuss and conclude with his or her own primary care physician.

Nordic Naturals has and continues to make supplements of unsurpassed quality omega 3 oils for nearly every need. Many physicians use and praise Nordic’s Cod Liver Oil with conservative amounts of Vitamin A and nominal amounts of Vitamin D. Also appreciated is Nordic’s Cod Liver Oil with added Vitamin D. For those wishing to supplement Vitamin D without any Vitamin A Nordic Naturals makes two different concentrations of fish oils that provide just that: omega 3 with the D and without the A. For the segment of the population that wants their essential fatty acids without other fat-soluble nutrients, our basic and concentrated fish oils offer many options. Nordic Naturals’ commitment is to give each practitioner and patient a full range of top quality options to fit their individual needs in essential fatty acids with or without naturals forms of naturally occurring Vitamin A or naturally derived added Vitamin D.
Betsy Punch
Nordic Naturals

************************************************** ************************************************** *************************

I would encourage all to read the actual study. The evidence for Dr Cannell’s conclusion is thin at best. The core researchers did not reach the conclusion Dr Cannell is promoting.

Nonetheless, if clients are uncomfortable with Vitamin A, there is no need for them to consume Vitamin A just to get their omega 3. We have fish oils with and without Vitamin D but with no Vitamin A so folks have that option.

Many many many clients do love the cod liver oil though, and specifically want the Vitamin A. Our population consumes far less Vitamin A than our predecessors, simply because they regularly ate liver and we do not. Many now don’t even eat egg yolks, another Vitamin A source. While for many, plant sources of beta-carotene convert to fully formed Vitamin A in the body, this conversion is not a given. The difficulty in obtaining adequate Vitamin A from beta-carotene maybe further compounded by conditions that impair nutrient absorption such as celiac sprue or other protein intolerances.

Vigorous debate is essential to advancing scientific knowledge. There will always be experts who draw opposite conclusions. We are not here to chose sides, but rather to make available a wide range of great sources of omega 3, with or without Vitamin A, with or without Vitamin D. Each practitioner can look at the research and come to their own conclusions, and then look to Nordic Naturals as their source for the freshest, purist omega 3 oils in the world.
Betsy Punch
Nordic Naturals
post #44 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metasequoia View Post

AllyRae, you got me. Mercola changes his stance like I change my underwear.


LOL!!! I love that!

I guess for now, I'll keep taking my Carlsons CLO and fish oil (I take them both, in addition to tumeric and baby aspirin because I have a serious blood disorder and I need to keep my blood thinned). Next week, Carlsons will be back on his good list maybe. :

ETA: I am gluten, nut, egg, and dairy free, so I probably don't have to worry too much about vitamin a toxicity. I also don't eat liver because I have qualms about eating an organ that filters toxins. So, I'm probably ok with the small amount of vitamin A in carlsons...
post #45 of 74
Thread Starter 
Also this from NN: (sorry about the formatting, it got messed up with the copy and paste)

Dear Nordic Naturals supporters,
I have been asked to speak about the recent controversies regarding cod liver oil
supplementation. First, I would like to say that we at Nordic Naturals stand by all our products
being safe and greatly health promoting. Myself, my children, pets, and thousands of customers
have been taking our Arctic cod liver oil daily for years. I attribute my outstanding health to my
daily dose of our authentic Arctic cod liver oil.
A commentary entitled "Cod Liver Oil, Vitamin A Toxicity, Frequent Respiratory Infections, and
the Vitamin D Deficiency Epidemic" (Cannell et al) has been in circulation the last few weeks of
2008 and has generated some concern. Their advice is that "manufacturers should properly
balance Vitamin D with Vitamin A in fortified foods and dietary supplements, although at this
time it is unclear what the ratio should be.”
Nordic Naturals continues to make omega-3 supplements of unsurpassed quality for nearly
every need, including many different formulations with additional natural Vitamin D3. Thousands
of physicians use and praise our Arctic Cod Liver Oil, which supplies conservative amounts of
Vitamin A and Vitamin D. Nordic Naturals’ commitment is to give each practitioner and customer
a full range of top quality options to fit their individual essential fatty acid needs, with or without
other nutrients. Consequently, we also offer our Arctic cod liver oil with 1000 IUs of Vitamin D
per serving for those wanting higher Vitamin D doses during the winter months.
Reference was made in that Commentary to a particular Nordic Naturals' cod liver oil product
and the vitamin A and D information on the product label. There are no facts in the
Commentary that support the statement that the Nordic Naturals Arctic cod liver oil products
contain up to 12,000 times the amount of vitamin A as vitamin D. In fact this is an error, Nordic
Naturals has always had low and healthy levels of natural Vitamin A in our cod liver oil;
consequently, we do not add Vitamin A, neither natural nor synthetic, to any of our cod liver oil
products. Arctic cod (skrei) has naturally a lower level of Vitamin D than Vitamin A. These cod
liver oil products have been used for numerous successful clinical studies managed by wellrespected
scientist; many of the studies have involved children.
Of note, The Commentary did not conclude that cod liver oil products were “dangerous” or that
the Nordic Naturals Arctic cod liver oil was “dangerous”. No scientific studies were cited to
support this statement, and Nordic Naturals is unaware of any such studies. This was simply an
opinion given by an individual, whom we have asked to desist making further unsupported
negative statements about our products.
Rest assured that we will continue to proudly produce the world’s purest and most authentic
Arctic cod liver oil for decades to come. Thank you for your continued support.
Sincerely,
Joar Opheim
post #46 of 74
Thread Starter 
one more press release here: (phew)

Press Releases

December 01, 2008

Nordic Naturals Offers Cod Liver Oil Solutions in Response to Recent Vitamin A and Vitamin D Controversy

Watsonville, CA (December 1, 2008) In response to the commentary entitled “Cod Liver Oil, Vitamin A Toxicity, Frequent Respiratory Infections, and the Vitamin D Deficiency Epidemic” published on November 11th by 16 well known supplement experts, Nordic Naturals announced today that its cod liver oil products pose no threat or compromise to consumers and actually offer healthy omega fatty acid solutions that are low in natural Vitamin A. According to Karin Yien, MD, Nordic Naturals Chief Medical Advisor, “The issue that is cited by this group is based on the fact that almost all cod liver oil in the market is being supplemented with synthetic or natural Vitamin A, standardized to certain levels, which is why it is assumed that all cod liver oil has high levels of Vitamin A. This is not true for the Nordic Naturals brand. We have always had low, healthy levels of natural Vitamin A in our cod liver oil; consequently, we do not add Vitamin A to any of our cod liver oil products.”

Nordic Naturals offers Arctic Cod Liver Oil made exclusively from Arctic Cod with no fish body oil or synthetic additives included. “Nordic Naturals typically averages 650 - 1500 IU of Vitamin A per serving which falls in the low range compared to other manufacturers’ products that can contain more than 4500 IU,” says Joar Opheim, CEO of Nordic Naturals. “Since we have never added synthetic vitamins to our oils, consumers have felt confident in our brand delivering the desired results without the potential of ingesting too much Vitamin A from this one source.”

The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for adults as established by the U.S. Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science is 3,000 IU for men and 2,300 IU for women.

For those wishing to increase their intake of Vitamin D, Nordic Naturals offers Arctic-D Cod Liver Oil with added Vitamin D in cholecalciferol form, the natural and most easily absorbed form of Vitamin D. This product offers 1,000 IU of Vitamin D, which has the added benefit of creating a greater balance between Vitamin A and D levels in the diet.

“We want to encourage our retailers and professionals to properly educate their customers and clients on quality standards, sourcing and ingredients contained in Nordic Naturals cod liver oil which distinguishes our brand as superior,” adds Dr. Yien. “For more information, see www.nordicnaturals.com.”
post #47 of 74
OK, I just posted this on the other two fish oil threads, so I thought I'd add it to this one too. We're trying wild salmon oil from Vital Choice. They make it themselves from their own catch, has all the original A and D in it. Has more iodine because it comes from the heads of fishes. Has less A than CLO, but about the same amount of D. EPA/DHA amounts are 240mg/220mg per 3/4 tsp.

A & D amounts are 2060 IU A and 340 IU of D per 3/4 tsp.

It's not fermented, which I'm sure reduces the benefits when compared to FCLO. But on balance, I'm feeling they're comparable, with the added benefit of extra DHA, iodine, and really high natural antioxidants (the same antioxidants as krill oil, actually). We also eat a lot of liver here, so feel good about getting extra A and K2 from that.

Plus, it's purity-tested. I just read something from Mercola that recommends Vital Choice salmon, saying he independently tested the fillets and they are low in or free of contaminants. I can't find the original article you guys are talking about that he wrote?
post #48 of 74
I just read this on the WAPF site in Dave's 2009 article about his (then) new fermented cod liver oil:

Quote:
Testing Cod Liver Oil

Our next challenge was to test the oils for nutrient content. Of course, we do the standard tests for pathogens, PCBs and heavy metals. We do this to every batch, and our batches are small, so the number of tests per gallon of product is substantially greater than typically carried out in the industry. The heavy metal levels are “not detectable” and the PCBs meet WHO .090 ppm standards, the limit to which these compounds can be measured.

Measuring nutrient levels turned out to be complicated. When you test industrial cod liver oils to which have been added synthetic vitamins A and D, you get graphs with well defined peaks, indicating the presence of vitamin A or D. But the tests for our fermented cod liver oil came back showing a jagged line, with numerous peaks, no matter which method we used, and these peaks did not always match up with synthetic control peaks. The lab technicians were as surprised as we were. Their explanation was that this natural oil contains many isomers of vitamins A and D. We have to add the peaks to get some idea of the total. We currently receive a wide range of nutrient values depending on the laboratory test method and interpretation of the analysis.

In general, the test totals are substantially higher for vitamin D than one would find in any industrialized cod liver oil. Whereas the highvitamin cod liver oil contains almost 12,000 IU vitamin A and 1200 IU vitamin D per teaspoon (five milliliters), the fermented oil contains 4,000 - 9,000 IU vitamin A per teaspoon and 3,000 - 4,000 IU vitamin D. The vitamin levels likely test lower because we are only testing for retinol and palmitate, not for all the other vitamin A isomers.

Anticipating increasingly stringent controls on supplements, we have decided to label the fermented cod liver oil as a food—which it certainly is. Thus the label will contain a suggested dose and list vitamin A as a percentage of the RDA. There will be no mention of vitamin D on the label.

The suggested dose will be about 2 - 2.5 ml or about 1/2 teaspoon for adults, double for pregnant and nursing women and those under stress, and half that for children. Some practitioners are giving larger doses to treat serious health problems. The experience of Dr. Rosann Volmert (see page 31) indicates that best results are obtained using a combination of fermented cod liver oil and high-vitamin butter oil—a confirmation of Dr. Price’s own experience.

Since this product is a fermented one, we surmised that it would contain vitamin K2 as well as vitamins A and D. What we found was a range of quinones, which include the various forms of K2. The fermentation increases the total quinone count by 700-1600 percent compared to readings prior to the fermentation process. We have not identified the specific quinones but I suspect that the K2 category and Co-enzyme Q family will be important components within the quinone nutrients. The fermented cod liver oil tests at 4-8 mg per gram, compared to the high-vitamin butter oil at 23-25 mg per gram. Quinone testing presents a fertile field for future research.
Now I feel like a doofus for implying that they don't test their fermented CLO...
post #49 of 74
nukuspot - I forwarded the email to Nanette.

I also emailed the original recipients & apologized for implying that Green Pastures didn't test their CLO, since Dave stated that they test every batch in his April 2009 article.
post #50 of 74
Heard back from Nanette, she wants to really research her response so she said she'd reply by mid to late week next week.
post #51 of 74
Thread Starter 
Great! Thanks, Erin.

I do wonder why the WAPF didn't address the question about why NN products don't appear anywhere on their lists of CLOs? Do you think you might ask Kathy again?
post #52 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metasequoia View Post
Ten bucks says he posts an article about how his krill oil doesn't have these risks within the next week.
Mercola, you're SO predictable! 1 week exactly...
post #53 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post
Great! Thanks, Erin.

I do wonder why the WAPF didn't address the question about why NN products don't appear anywhere on their lists of CLOs? Do you think you might ask Kathy again?
I wrote back and said that I appreciated the link to Chris's article and that it was great, but that it didn't answer any of our questions in the email.
No response since... SF usually answers my emails.

I'm also curious about what Nora Gedgaudas has to say about the WAPF's position on fish oil since she recommends it. I think she has a discussion forum, no?
post #54 of 74
After all these pages, my head is spinning. So did we conclude that Vit A is good or bad?

I haven't eaten liver since this article came out.
post #55 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebirdmama1 View Post
After all these pages, my head is spinning. So did we conclude that Vit A is good or bad?

I haven't eaten liver since this article came out.
I think it's a super-nutrient if you get it from food (including fermented CLO). A lot of people take CLO for the D, but I take it as much for the A.

I love liver and think it's a wonderful way to get A.

Mercola just wants to sell his krill oil.
post #56 of 74
Uggh, this is all sooo frustrating.

I know this question was asked earlier, but I am still not entirely clear. So, if the A in NN CLO is not synthetic ( I guess we are still waiting to see why GP says it is synthetic) and it is supplemented by natural D drops, then does this seem like a reasonably safe alternative (no PCBs, no synthetic A and a more correct ratio of A to D)?? I know NN makes this type of combo. I have been taking the FCLO, but it's just not getting into the children. OTOH, they love the NN CLO and it is easy to supplement with Carlson's D drops, and I am very confident in the purity.

Just anecdotally, while supplementing with D drops this winter my kids have not been sick at all, even during the supposed flu outbreak here.

Or is the problem just A altogether??
post #57 of 74
I've been reading this thread and staying on top of the discussion. I want to throw something out there, and maybe I'll get flamed for saying this...but I am very skeptical when a company/foundation/health guru will only recommend ONE brand of supplement to take, and say that all others are unsafe or don't measure up. Just puts up a red-flag in my book. It's one step away to Mecola...
post #58 of 74
This has made me just re-order my yearly supply from NN!
post #59 of 74
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jessicaSAR View Post
Uggh, this is all sooo frustrating.

I know this question was asked earlier, but I am still not entirely clear. So, if the A in NN CLO is not synthetic ( I guess we are still waiting to see why GP says it is synthetic) and it is supplemented by natural D drops, then does this seem like a reasonably safe alternative (no PCBs, no synthetic A and a more correct ratio of A to D)?? I know NN makes this type of combo. I have been taking the FCLO, but it's just not getting into the children. OTOH, they love the NN CLO and it is easy to supplement with Carlson's D drops, and I am very confident in the purity.

Just anecdotally, while supplementing with D drops this winter my kids have not been sick at all, even during the supposed flu outbreak here.

Or is the problem just A altogether??
If I could just ask one question--This would be it EXACTLY! I take NN CLO and 400IU D in d-drop format. I have never taken the CLO for the D (since NN doesn't have barely any in it) just for the EFA's and the A. I thought that by supplementing with another source of D it would all balance out. But now I just am so confused!
post #60 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post
I do wonder why the WAPF didn't address the question about why NN products don't appear anywhere on their lists of CLOs?

It is specifically because NN's levels of A are too low to protect against the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA's) in CLO and balance vitamin D toxicity as addressed by Chris Masterjohn's article on "Vitamin A On Trial".
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