advertisement



Q & A Library


Print this page | Sign up for free e-bulletins
 | Bookmark This Page

Q
Udo's Oil: Can Essential Fatty Acids Promote Weight Loss?

Can Udo's Oil plus a healthy diet and exercise help with weight loss? Also, can it help with thinning hair?

A
Answer (Published 8/11/2011)

Udo's Choice Oil Blend is a good product, but despite claims on the manufacturer's website, I wouldn't depend on it for weight loss or to improve the look and feel of skin, hair and nails. The website maintains that the essential fatty acids (omega-3s and omega-6s) in the product help with weight loss by improving mood and energy and suppressing appetite. I've seen no scientific evidence to support this claim.

Related Weil Products
Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging for Healthy Eating - Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging for Nutrition - Want to change your diet? The Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging online guide is your anti-inflammatory diet headquarters. Start your free trial and get access to an exclusive version of Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid, hundreds of recipes, eating guides, and more.

However, the imbalance between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in the typical American diet may contribute to obesity, as well as to a long list of diseases including coronary heart disease and many forms of cancer, which are believed to stem from excessive inflammation. In addition, the imbalance may lead to depression, dyslexia, hyperactivity and even a tendency toward violence.

Many nutrition experts believe that before we relied so heavily on processed foods, humans consumed omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in roughly equal amounts. Today, most North Americans and Europeans get far too much of the omega-6s and not enough omega-3s. Bringing these fats into proper proportion may contribute to better mental as well as physical health, according to Joseph Hibbeln, M.D., a psychiatrist at the National Institutes of Health, and perhaps the world's leading authority on the relationship between fat consumption and mental health.

If you follow my anti-inflammatory diet, you should get a healthy ratio of essential fatty acids. In general, I advise cutting down on omega-6 intake by reducing consumption of processed and fast foods and polyunsaturated vegetable oils. Use extra virgin olive oil for cooking and in salad dressings. Eat more oily fish and take fish oil supplements. Also, eat walnuts, freshly ground flax seeds, and omega-3 fortified eggs.

The claim that Udo's Oil will improve the look of skin, hair and nails is probably based on the fact that dry skin is a symptom of omega-3 fatty acid deficiency. Correcting that could improve matters, but I would also recommend taking GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) in the form of black currant oil or evening primrose oil, available in capsules or soft gels. Try 500 mg of either twice a day for six to eight weeks to see if it helps along with the omega-3s. (I'm afraid none of this will help with weight loss, however.)

Bear in mind that thinning hair may stem from the hormonal changes leading to menopause, from severe stress, damaging effects of hair care treatments or styling, and habitually twisting or pulling your hair. Some prescription drugs can cause excessive hair shedding so if you're taking any medication, check to see if hair loss is a side effect. You also might ask your doctor to test you for thyroid disease, which can frequently cause hair to thin. If so, treatment should result in hair regrowth.

Andrew Weil, M.D.

Creative Commons License Some Rights Reserved Creative Commons Copyright Notice
A portion of the original material created by Weil Lifestyle, LLC on DrWeil.com (specifically, all question and answer-type articles in the Dr. Weil Q&A Library) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

The Weil Vitamin Advisor
Get your FREE personalized vitamin recommendation & supplement plan today!

Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging
Your Online Guide to the Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Start eating for your health - begin your free trial now.

Dr. Weil's Spontaneous Happiness
Achieve emotional well-being
in just eight weeks!
Start your 10-day free trial now!

Vitamin Library
Supplement your knowledge with Dr. Weil's essential vitamin facts. Learn why they are necessary and more.

Dr. Weil's Optimum Health Plan
Your 8-week plan to wellness.
Begin your journey today!
 

Dr. Weil's Head-to-Toe
Wellness Guide

Your guide to natural health.
Use the Wellness Guide today!

Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food Pyramid
Our interactive tool can help improve overall health through diet.

Condition Care Guide
Learn about health conditions from acne to vertigo, and Dr. Weil's view of the best treatment options for each.

Healthy Recipes
Discover a treasure trove of healthy, healing foods and creative, delicious ways to prepare them.

Q&A Library
Over 2,000 questions from you
and their corresponding answers
from Dr. Weil.

 
Copyright © 2014 Weil Lifestyle, LLC
Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

Ad Choice
Advertising Notice

This Site and third parties who place advertisements on this Site may collect and use information about your visits to this Site and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like to obtain more information about these advertising practices and to make choices about online behavioral advertising, please click here