Nutritional therapist Joanne Gribbin of LifeForce Nutrition on Camelina Oil
Nutritional therapist Joanne Gribbin, of LifeForce Nutrition, gives us a run down on the benefits of Camelina "wild Flax" oil and How best to use it in your every day diet
Camelina "Wild Flax" Oil
Newgrange Gold Camelina Oil comes from the cold pressing of the camelina seed. Camelina is also known as false flax, which should give you an idea of the health benefits associated with this little seed.
Camelina contains exceptionally high levels of Omega 3 oils in comparison to other vegetable oils. It also naturally contains antioxidants (Vitamin E) which helps the oil to remain stable, and avoid oxidation, and rancidity. In comparison to flax oil, which contains up to 60% Omega 3; Camelina contains over 30% Omega 3 oils. Although the Omega 3 content is less in Camelina, it is suitable for cooking with (flax oil is not), which makes it easier to include in your daily diet. Camelina also contains high levels for Omega 6 and 9 oils, making it a very healthy, balanced oil.
Essential Fatty Acids Consumption
As Camelina oil contains a very high ratio of Omega 3 oils, in comparison to other vegetable oils, it is a very useful addition to one’s diet with countless benefits. The modern day diet is shamefully low in adequate levels of Omega 3. Omega 3 is an Essential Oil, meaning it must be included in the diet, as the body does not produce it. Omega 6 is also an essential oil, however, the modern day diet greatly assists the inclusion of Omega 6 in diet through foods such as meat, eggs, vegetables oils and processed foods. The ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 intake is up to 16:1; while traditionally this would have ranged from 4:1 to 1:4, depending on the demographic being studied. Evidently Omega 3 consumption is too low in the modern day diet. With the addition of processed foods, which contain a lot of vegetables oils, people are consuming too much Omega 6 and too little Omega 3.
Why is this a problem?
Omega 3 is highly anti-inflammatory, and conversely, Omega 6 has pro-inflammatory properties. Although we need some levels of inflammation to protect our bodies from infection and injury, too much inflammation is associated with many metabolic syndromes we see in today’s society. When Omega 3 and Omega 6 are consumed in the correct ratio, all is well. However, when the consumption ratio of Omega 3 is much lower than Omega 6 it can lead to, or add to, an inflammatory environment in the body. This balance can be addressed by consuming more Omega 3 rich foods such as oily fish, nuts and seeds, flaxseed and camelina oils.
Studies have shown that diets rich in Omega 3 essential oils lead to less incidences of cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome and high cholesterol. Thankfully not ALL cholesterol is bad. HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) bind cholesterol or “Good” cholesterol helps to balance out LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein, the “bad” cholesterol) and helps to reduce the likelihood of plaque building up on artery walls. So the higher that ratio of HDL to LDL the better. By increasing your Omega 3 intake you will also increase you HDL intake, which will help to protect your heart and arteries. Camelina oil has been shown to increase Omega 3 levels in the blood and reduce blood triglyceride levels (which is a common marker for cardiovascular disease) as well as reducing serum cholesterol high cholesterol where blood plasma levels were above 5.00mmol/l.
Camelina is also naturally high in Vitamin E which helps to thin the blood and therefore help to reduce blood pressure.
How to include camelina oil in your diet
Camelina Oil is a very simple, yet effective way of adding Omega 3 into the body.
Cooking with camelina - Following a testing in LIT, the flash point of Camelina Oil is 334?C, which is very similar to Olive Oil. I would recommend sautéing with this type of so that it doesn’t over heat, and burn.
Camelina is the perfect oil for salads. Instead of using olive oil, you can use Camelina as a base for your salad dressing or the simple, yet timeless, oil and balsamic vinegar salad dressing.
Another very easy way to increase your intake of Camelina is by including a tablespoon of it in your smoothies. It’ s always very important to add essential fats to a smoothie, by adding Camelina Oil you will ensure you are getting a balance of Omega 3, 6 and 9.
Joanne Gribbin, of LifeForce Nutrition, is a fully qualified Nutritional Therapist and a member of NTOI (Nutritional Therapists of Ireland- independent regulatory body in Ireland).
Joanne runs clinics in Navan and Ashbourne in Co. Meath helping people to make positive, healthy changes in their lives. With so many mixed messages regarding nutrition in the media and on-line, Joanne ensures she gives her clients clear guidelines and advise to help implement these changes. Joanne also uses coaching techniques acquired through a Certificate in Health and Wellness Coaching. By using these coaching techniques Joanne enables her clients to reach their own individual goals. Joanne also holds a Practitioner Certificate in NLP, and integrates these techniques into her clinics.
If you would like more information on how Joanne can help you, please contact her on
P: 086 3244222