A recent study was published showing a direct link to both the type and amounts of fat in your diet and the development of colon cancer. The study looked at dietary fatty acids - both saturated and polyunsaturated fats and determined that our American diet is out of balance.

In very broad terms, the study looked at the balance of Omega 3 fatty acids and Omega 6 fatty acids. Ideally, they should be eaten in a 1:1 ratio; but the average american eats 16 times more omega 6s than omega 3s. This imbalance is being linked to a variety of health concerns, including colorectal cancers.

What does this mean at the grocery store? Lots of chemical names don’t help when you are making a shopping list or reading a menu. So, think swapping this for this:

  • Swap soybean oil for canola, walnut, or flaxseed oils.

  • Swap beef for fish at least once a week and gradually increase it to 2-3 times per week

  • Swap grain fed beef for grass fed beef - the diet of the cow determines the balance of fatty acids in the meat. This is also true for hens and the eggs they lay. Hens fed greens and insects instead of soybeans produce eggs much higher in Omega 3s.

Both types of fatty acids are essential for life, so no one is recommending that we try to eliminate one for the other. As is true in most issues in life, moderation is the key. Finding balance is a healthy solution when it comes to fatty acids. In Mississippi, the physicians of GI Associates are ready to help you determine your risk for developing colon cancer.

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