Monday, January 14, 2013

Why We Stopped Taking Fermented Cod Liver Oil

(I've moved! You can see this article on my new website here!)

August 2015 UPDATE: See the shocking test results for Fermented Cod Liver Oil here.

We used to take cod liver oil every day. We would never miss a day.  Now we haven't taken cod liver oil in over 6 months... Why?

My Family Started Taking Cod Liver Oil in 2006

picture from
My husband and I started taking cod liver oil back in 2006 when we learned about the benefits of a nutrient-dense, traditional diet. At that time, the cod liver oil we took was called Blue Ice, and we chose that brand because it was one of the only cod liver oils produced in a traditional way. Most other cod liver oils on the market had their vitamins removed in processing and some even had synthetic vitamins added back in. We wanted our cod liver oil to be as natural as possible to get the most benefit from it.

The Blue Ice cod liver oil was very light in color; clear with a hint of yellow. It didn't have a very strong odor or flavor, but it did smell and taste like fish. We had amazing results when we started taking the cod liver oil, and noticed that it particularly benefited our immune systems. My husband and I took a daily dose of cod liver oil each morning before breakfast, and then made sure to eat plenty of grassfed butter with breakfast (since cod liver oil works synergistically with the Vitamin K found in grassfed butter). In 2007, we had our first child and as she started eating foods in addition to breastmilk, she also started having a daily dose of cod liver oil. She loved it and would ask for her cod liver oil every day.

A New Cod Liver Oil on the Market?

Fast forward a few years to 2009, when I was beginning my second pregnancy. I heard that the Blue Ice cod liver oil was no longer being produced, so we stockpiled about a dozen bottles. I started hearing about a new Blue Ice cod liver oil that would be even better because it was fermented. We regularly eat fermented foods, so fermented cod liver sounded fine. I ordered a bottle, thinking that I wanted to get the best nutrition for the baby growing inside me. When the new fermented cod liver oil arrived, I was surprised to see that it was very thick, very dark, and had a very foul odor. I went ahead and tried one dose; it was absolutely disgusting! It burned my throat, and it didn't help that I was already nauseous from pregnancy. After that one dose, even the smell of the fermented cod liver oil would turn my stomach. I was glad we had stockpiled lots of the non-fermented cod liver oil to last through my pregnancy.

Fast forward another year, and we ran out of our stockpile of the original Blue Ice cod liver oil. We now had two children, and by this time, I was hearing that the fermented cod liver oil was superior nutritionally, and that the initial strong taste and smell was no longer quite so bad. We went ahead and ordered some and made ourselves start taking it. My daughter hated the cod liver oil, but we finally found that she would take the combination butter oil/fermented cod liver oil in cinnamon flavor. She didn't like taking it, so I came up with all sorts of ways to get her to take her daily dose. My infant son, after one taste, refused to eat any food at all for a few days (so he just nursed more); I tried again every few months and he eventually started to take the orange flavored liquid fermented cod liver oil.

Digestive Problems from Taking Fermented CLO

Meanwhile, my husband often complained that the fermented cod liver oil made him nauseous. He had to try to find ways to take it to minimize the nauseousness. I found that it could also make me nauseous, especially if I took it on an empty stomach. Yet, through it all, we persisted in taking it. So many trusted people were saying it was good for us, and I wanted my family to have the best nutrition. And we still found that, particularly during flu season, the fermented cod liver oil really helped our immune systems. I even coordinated large group purchases of cod liver oil for others we knew who were taking cod liver oil.

Different Methods for Making Cod Liver Oil

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About 8 months ago, while collaborating with a man named Archie Welch on another project, I learned that he was doing research into cod liver oil, after having problems getting his son to take the fermented cod liver oil. And what Archie learned was that there were traditionally several different ways to make cod liver oil. One ancient method used no heat, chemicals, or pressure to extract the oil, resulting in an oil with almost no flavor or odor. Another method used by Nordic fishermen, the livers were steamed, resulting in a pale cod liver oil with a light smell. In another later method, the livers were fermented in a barrel, resulting in a dark brown, strong smelling oil. This dark brown cod liver oil was likely to contain bits of rancid and putrefying livers, which contributed to its strong odor and flavor. 

As cod liver oil became more popular for medicinal use in the 1800's, there were practitioners who used the pale oil and also those who used the dark brown oil. Great health benefits were observed form both types of oil, but some people did have digestive problems from the dark brown oil. (Archie has put together a great article detailing all of this history here.)

Once I read Archie's article, I really understood better why we had such problems with the fermented cod liver oil. Because of the way it is produced, it is likely to contain some bits of rotting livers, and this is why the oil could be so offensive to us. (To be fair, some bottles of fermented cod liver oil were not as bad as other bottles. But some were downright horrendous.) But with no other good alternatives on the market, what were we to do?

The Last Straw

Upon taking a dose of particularly dark cod liver oil last summer, I had severe stomach cramping and diarrhea. Afterwards, I couldn't bring myself to take another dose. Over about a month, we all stopped taking the fermented cod liver oil. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop; wouldn't we start getting sick more often now?

Over the same time period, every member of my family has started undergoing constitutional homeopathic treatment. Constitutional treatment is a long process, sometimes taking a year or more, but rather than focusing on a single illness, constitutional treatment focuses on every aspect of a person's personality and health. This means that, over time, constitutional treatment actually helps the body cure itself of the tendency to even get sick in the first place. I have also been using my new knowledge of homeopathy at the first signs of any illness in my family (this is acute homeopathy treatment, as opposed to constitutional which I am not trained in yet). So, even though we haven't been taking our cod liver oil, this has been the best year for our family in terms of contracting illnesses. Each of us has had one cold in the last four months. The previous winter, we all had multiple stomach flus and colds. (I will be talking more about our healing through homeopathy in future posts.)

So as of now, no one in our family has taken cod liver oil in over 6 months. And thanks to homeopathy, we haven't been sick either!

Will we ever take cod liver oil again? 

We don't plan to take fermented cod liver oil again. However, I would like to have some light-colored cod liver oil on hand just in case (since it has worked so wonderfully for us in the past in helping us quickly get over illnesses). There hasn't been a traditionally prepared light cod liver oil on the market in the United States since production of the original Blue Ice cod liver oil was stopped years ago. But, after doing all of his research into cod liver oil, Archie Welch was able to find small company in Norway who was using the ancient extraction method with no heat, chemicals, or pressure to make ratfish liver oil.  As a result of Archie's prompting, this small company is now using the same method to make raw cod liver oil. Archie is finishing up the process of making that cod liver oil available here in the United States and he will be selling that light cod liver oil at We will definitely be buying some of the raw cod liver oil, and will be happy to once again have the lightly flavored, lightly colored oil to take just as we did years ago.

Does this information make you think twice about taking fermented cod liver oil?  Have you or your family had any bad reactions to it?

This post is part of Traditional Tuesdays, Pennywise Platter and Fat Tuesday

Affiliate Disclosure: As of May 2015, my family likes the extra virgin cod liver oil so much that I have signed up as an affiliate for EVCLO. The link to EVCLO above is an affiliate link.


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Tamara Slack said...

Thank you for this. I have been taking cod liver oil for quite a few yrs. I have mercury poisoning among other things (undiagnosed MS and Addison's Disease). Serious adrenal problems!

I came across FCLO about 2 yrs. ago and started buying it up. I even spoke with the owner of the company and wrote a piece on it at Suite101 because I am certain that fermented cod liver oil is the way to go, however, I've had these problems with histamine for a couple years and couldn't figure out why I am having such bad histamine problems.

I bought an ebook about how some people do not make enough enzymes to break down histamine and which foods contain a high amount of histadine which turns into histamine and to stop taking in those foods - guess what was on the list: fermented foods, of course. (I've studied with Hawthorn University to become a Nutritionist, so I know the benefits of fermenting; this piece of info saddened me re: the histamine / fermented foods). So I stopped taking in high histadine / histamine foods which included the FCLO - voila! A week later, I'm having no problems, can concentrate better, am actually healing (I was dying in 2010 and been in bed nearly 24 hours a day since then).

I'm SO GLAD I came across this blog post. I don't know if I can take the one you recommended at the bottom or not, but I *might* give it a try later on down the road.

For now, however, I am not sure which cod liver oil to take since it's the fermentation that causes the histamine problems. I would think just taking a denatured CLO and adding the D in it (already take ghee or butter oil and extra K and E anyway). Do you have any suggestions?

Thanks so much for letting us know about your experience.

Tamara Slack

Anonymous said...

My daughter takes it every day (she is 3 1/2). I am amazed that she takes it (plain, non-flavored), as she is the pickiest eater in the world. I give her 5 ml dose every morning, and sometimes I also give it to her in the evening. I don't take it due to cost (very expensive). My husband started taking it in capsules as he would never be able to stomach that taste. It really taste like fermented fish and the taste is horrible. If it were cheaper, I would take it as well (I only take it occasionally). However, we only take it in the winter months. In the summer, we don't need it- no flu season to be protected from. I has a few times when my daughter would get a fever and after a large dose of the fermented cod liver oil, her fever was gone in 1 hour. I am not 100% sure it is this oil, but it seems that it is.
Thank you for posting this, I read your post very carefully and with interest. I would be very interested in buying the oil from your friend when available. Also, have you tried krill oil? Dr. Mercola recommends it strongly.

Unknown said...

You are a brave woman! FCLO is such the rage for members of the WAPF. I'm a serious member myself, and yet, taking fermented cod liver oil has been a great challenge. We have 2 bottles of plain in the fridge with very little out of them. I can't tell you how glad I am to get this post. It gives me hope that we can take a good version of cod liver oil. I hope the price is better, too!

A Pennsylvania chapter leader sent out the above u-tube in regard to skate oil. I found it very interesting.


Anonymous said...

Try the "cinnamon tingle" flavor. It makes it palatable for our family. I will continue to take Green Patures FCLO for life as I do not seem to have the histamine reactions mentioned here. It not only helps us with our immunity (knee deep in flu here in the south and no one in our family has come down with it) but it also helps me *significantly* with my depression and arthritis symptoms. Hate the taste, love the results!

Anonymous said...

I've had no trouble with the plain FCLO. In fact according to muscle testing my body REALLY needs it. I did have a lot of gastric distress with the cinnamon flavored one though and it did not test well at body wanted no part of it. I am not intolerant to cinnamon either so it must have been something with the processing.

Rochelle said...

My family has been taking FCLO for the last year and haven't had any digestive issues with it unlike other CLO. I think it is easier to digest and we don't get fishy burps with it. I am concerned about some of it being rancid as that could be toxic to those of us with sensitive systems. My sense of smell is so good that I have to take the capsules and even then I can smell them going down my throat. The only way I can keep from gagging is to chase them with food.

Unknown said...

hi tamara,

i'm currently dealing with a severe allergy situation.
would you mind telling me what the name of the ebook was and/or any recommendations re: research of "histamine foods?"
this is a relatively new development for me, but i do live with a chronic illness that has wreaked havoc on seemingly every system in my body. i'm strongly considering the GAPS diet, but again, i need more information.

i've been waiting on tenterhooks of anticipation for the FCLO to show up at my acupuncturist's office---however, i don't want to take something that's potentially disruptive. my body's been through enough!


Unknown said...

what i'm appreciating from this post (and the last) was the addition of an alternative narrative in the WAPF world--because it can feel at times from reading about it as though living this lifestyle will do something magic.

i know the benefits personally. it has helped me so much. but, it also hasn't "cured" me and i think that it's important to ascribe a one-size-fits-all lifestyle onto everything. thank you so much sarah for keeping us posted!

now on to more GAPS research...

Unknown said...

Thank you for this very informative post on what I think is a very important topic, CLO.
I like Lynn have a good deal of confidence in the WAPF leaders/writers etc. but trust any of us are fallible and we should all be open to new information.

I have never taken FCLO or felt I could recommend it to my clients simply because to me the cost was prohibitive (the taste may be for some but I would have happily tackled that for the supposed benefits). I have used Nordic Natural CLO with D added (I'm not afraid of their source of D3, should I be?). This seemed to be a very high quality source from a company that I think is very reputable (just expensive)

Standard Process, another company I think has very high processing standards and ethics has just started carrying a CLO which supposedly is produced in a way to preserve the natural A & D.

I'm very interested in the source you are recommending and will look into it as well as review the literature on WPF and review Green Pasture's CLO to compare.

I consider CLO a super "food" vs. supplement and am very interested in finding the best source for myself, my family and my clients, so I am very appreciative of this very informative post.


John Ray, RN
Family Health Consultant

Alison said...

I think it is ALWAYS important to pay very close attention to what your body is telling you. Yes, FCLO may be touted as this fantastic and healing remedy, but that doesn't mean that it's right for everyone. I am a WAPF member and always sample the Blue Ice cod liver oil. It tastes awful, makes me burp (which indicates it's not being digested properly) and leaves literally makes me stink (It emanates from my pores). Why would I want to subject myself to that everyday? There are so many options out there. Why would it be a one-size-fits-all scenario? Maybe FCLO works for one person, homeopathy works for another, and beer and chips work for another. We all have different constitutions, and we need to honor ourselves primarily.

Anonymous said...

If the purpose of CLO, fermented or not, is to ensure absorption of fat soluable vitamins/minerals, what other strategies can be used to ensure this?
Would inclusion of a healthy unsaturated fat, such as EVOO for a salad's dressing, or avocado within salsa.... Does this not suffice for ensuring absorption of fat soluable vitamins/minerals? Patty

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this post. I cannot stomach the FCLO either and have felt so bad about wasting it. It sits in my fridge because not only is the taste horrible, I get burning in my throat, and digestive distress after taking it. I have often wondered - how can something that smells and tastes so foul be good for me?! I am interested in trying this new kind you speak of. Thanks.


Anonymous said...

What do you think of Garden of Life clo? I feel it is a quality product. Have you heard anything about it?

Cindy said...

Thanks for another great post Sarah.
I have been taking FCLO around a month now, and was also expecting some magical transformation...I haven't noticed any response to date, bad or good. Can any members indicate how long before one is likely to get results? I have very severe CFS/ME -15 years worth- and know my road to improved health will be a long one. Meanwhile, I'm on a disability pension in Australia and the cost of FCLO is even more prohibitive after import. So I really need to weigh up which GAPS supplements are absolutely vital for me!
Any help would be great, thanks.

Unknown said...

cindy! i have severe me/cfs as well. i was actually in a wheelchair/completely bed bound for all of 2009---i attribute my achieved functionality to food, acupuncture, herbs, rest, knowing my triggers, and lifestyle changes. in the meantime, if you'd like to connect off the forum, please do reach out. i just launched a cooking show/blog in order to share my experience, food, and tips for cooking with chronic illness (for those low energy days). i'm currently in a bad flare (with TONS of new food allergies) and so i'm looking more seriously into GAPS. have you done it? are you doing it? please do get in touch! or you can google my show/blog with my name In The Kitchen, Keepin' It Real
hope you're feeling as well as possible,

Jennifer at Purposeful Nutrition said...

Interesting timing on this post. I was just getting ready to order some FCLO but after reading this I am having some serious second thoughts.

Karen said...


Symptomatically it seems like you may have undiagnosed Lyme which can disguise itself as many other illnesses. Just thinking. You may want to investigate that and see if there are any Lyme Literate Doctors near you. To find one, go to, click on "Contact Us" and send an e:mail letting them know your location. They will send you the names of LLD's near you. Best of luck.

Anonymous said...

I love that you're so candid with your family's experience and willing to be honest when something hasn't worked for you.

It always bugged the skeptic in me that FLCO was only made by one company, it was twice as expensive, was somewhat "new", and the only information I could find on it was from Green Pastures. And the horror stories I heard about the taste made me cringe to spend so much on something that my kids might not take at all. So we just kept on taking the regular stuff that was listed under "Better" on the WAPF website.

Archie's website seems very well-researched, which does my skeptic's heart good. :) I'll definitely be looking into it more come February.


BrianShiro said...

I'm confused. By far the majority of cod liver oils available on the market are NOT fermented. You have to go out of your way to find fermented cod liver oil (FLCO), and to my knowledge, the only brand commercially available is Green Pasture's Blue Ice line of FLCO. If you prefer non-fermented varieties of CLO, there are plenty of options out there from several brands.

It's worth noting that FCLO is much healthier and traditional than non-fermented, so your experience with and comments on the newer Blue Ice line are puzzling.

For what it's worth, my family has been taking daily FLCO for the past six months as we've been on the GAPS diet, and have not had a single digestive complaint about it. We get the flavored Blue Ice FCLO from Green Pasture. My favorite is cinnamon, my wife likes mint, and my kids like orange. We just tried their newer butter oil / FLCO blend "gel", and again I like cinnamon, but the rest of my family likes chocolate.

Sarah Smith said...

You are correct that there is only one fermented CLO on the market. However, the vast majority of the other CLO's on the market are not produced in a traditional way; many of them have the Vitamin A removed due to supposed Vit A toxicity (which would not be an issue with natural Vit A anyway); and many of them even have the Vit D removed as well and then have synthetic vitamins added back in (this is cheaper since they can process the oil/purify it/deoderize it/etc and not worry about the Vitamins since they add back in synthetic ones anyway). So, back when we took the original Blue Ice (light-colored, NOT fermented), it was one of the only ones on the market that actually had the natural Vitamins A and D still intact in their natural ratios.

FCLO is not necessarily more traditional than non-fermented. As noted in Archie's long article, there were originally processes that either kept the oil raw (and NON fermented) or lightly steamed the livers to remove the oil. Fermenting it came about later. After our experiences with FCLO compared to the original Blue Ice (which was more of a traditional processing than most CLO's now), I know that for my family, we will do better with the raw or lightly steamed method. There isn't a lightly steamed oil on the market now, so we will be buying some of the raw oil when that becomes available next month.

Bethanne Elion said...

I'm auto-immune and the fermented is the only one I have ever been able to stomach at all. I love the taste of the cinnamon one and feel better when I take it and miss it when i don't.

Michellerobin1979 said...

Another great read, I cant believe I just found your blog!

I took the combo FCLO/butter oil capsules made by Green Pastures. The capsules never bothered me, but I never felt like I was getting a high enough dosage, even when taking several capsules through out the day. Plus finically it seemed like a bad idea taking the capsules rather then the liquid. How ever looking back (I took that all last year and not at all this year) that year on the capsules I stayed super healthy and was never very sick. This winter I have been sick constantly.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE that another brand/option is coming our way! I have always been displeased that there is only one option that is "approved" by the WAP foundation. I have always been left with this feeling that Green Pastures are stock holders in the foundation. I will be buying a bottle of the new stuff come Feb. and can then decide which brand I prefer.

Debbie said...

Thanks for the post, Sarah! My family has been taking Cinnamon Tingle FCLO/butter oil for the past 1.5 years as part of our GAPS diet regimen (we've been on GAPS for two years).

Although we've noticed considerable variability in the quality of the product we buy, we haven't had any noticeable side effects of taking it (and we're pretty well versed in the way our bodies react to foods and supplements). However, I'm glad to hear about your experience and about another option that will be coming soon!

Incidentally, to get my sons to eat their daily 1 tsp serving of cinnamon flavored FCLO/Butter oil I add about 1/2 tsp of honey and 1/2 tsp of coconut oil and stir it up into a paste. My younger son (6 yrs) gobbles it up. My older son (9 yrs, generally more sensitive) complains but does eat it.

Unknown said...

What worries me about Cod Liver Oil is the same worry I have about all unsaturated fats. As most WAPF members, I agree that cholesterol is not the cause of cardiovascular disease. However, some scientists are beginning to think that oxidized cholesterol is a major contributing factor in CVD.

If this is true, we should look at the sources of oxidized cholesterol. Saturated fats are very stable and therefore not oxidized. Although Sally Fallon points out in The Oiling of America that powdered protein contains it. So vegetable oils and powdered or dehydrated protein are the big no nos.

There is nothing new here until we look at the all sources of unstable saturated fats. Which highly unstable unsaturated fat does the modern health movement constantly promote as way to prevent CVD?... Fish oil! It quickly oxidizes in contact with air at room temperature; not even needing to be heated. So fish oil capsules are beginning to be seen as a contributing factor in CVD risk.

WAPF published an article by Christ Masterjohn titled Precious Yet Perilous where he demonstrated the toxicity of fish oil. What concerns me is that CLO is not being treated as an unstable unsaturated fish oil.

Also, Dr. Barry Sears is a great promoter of large amounts of fish oil to remove Soft Vulnerable Plaque (SVP), a sort of pimples that grow inside the arteries and cause heart attacks when they explode, from the arteries and valves. He provides solid evidence of his claim demonstrating that 40 days of fish oil remove SVP. However, he does not account for oxidation, nor does he account for the other effects of Fish Oil.

For example it is well established that fish oil suppresses vitamin E (Peat), and it is also established that vitamin E suppresses CoQ10 (Langsjoen). Finally, Dr. Peter Langsjoen (the father of CoQ10) proved the great cardiovascular benefits of CoQ10. So I'm beginning to suspect that fish oil is not the cause of the reduction in SVP. Rather, it's suppression of vitamin E allows CoQ10 to become more effectual and therefore clean the SVP. So Fish Oil may in fact be piggy backing off its side effect, not being the real benefit.

Furthermore, Ray Peat's article The Great Fish Oil Experiment gives evidence that oxidized CLO has been shown to dramatically increase the rate of cancer in animals.

I don't understand the disconnect. I'm trying to reconcile the conflict between the dangers of unsaturated fats and the benefit of CLO. Does the fermentation process prevent oxidation? Does fermentation remove the carcinogenic factors? How else could CLO not be harmful? I don't know so as for now I will avoid it.

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Gabriel,
Traditionally prepared cod liver oil should not be oxidized. It is not heated (oxidation occurs more at higher temperatures) and it is protected from light by the dark color of the bottle. One thing also to note is that cod liver oil is not the same as fish oil. Cod liver oil has a much higher amount of Vitamins A and D, plus more DHA/EPA than fish oil. I think the benefits of cod liver oil, which we experienced when we first started taking the light oil years ago, are largely due to the high concentration of Vit A and D. Any time we've been sick, taking a full tablespoon (or two) of cod liver oil has a hugely beneficial effect on the immune system.

Most of the cod liver oils on the market are probably oxidized curing processing through heat and/or chemicals. Fermented cod liver oil and the totally raw oil that will be coming out soon are not prepared in ways that should cause oxidation. You may be interested in this article:

Unknown said...

Hi Sarah,

Thanks for the resource. Mr. Welch's history is very good. If I go wish CLO or FCLO it'll be his.

I do have one last concern. I'm trying to find out if unsaturated fat oxidizes in the blood. I've been reading articles that claim it is safer to actually oxidize the PUFA before you eat them because the digestive system rejects them before they're absorbed. That debate is found here ( They claim it is the oxidation inside the body that causes the harm from oxidation.

Here ( Dr. Peat claims that PUFA do oxidize inside the blood. However, he really does not distinguish between oxidized and unoxidized PUFA.

And then there is Mercola who claims that fish oil is very unstable and needs astaxanthin to keep from oxidizing ( That is why he recommends Krill oil, which is naturally high in astaxanthin.

What I can't find is who's done the research on the oxidative stress of CLO/FCLO. There is an article at WPF, but they're website seems to be down for the day. If you know anything about this, please let me know.

Sarah, you've a great help. Thank you!

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Gabriel,
I can't answer your question with any certainty. One thing I've learned in the 7 years since we started our real food journey is that nutritionists/health professionals rarely seem to agree on anything. I've stopped worrying so much about all the tiny details and scientific studies, and instead I generally use one rule when trying to figure out what to do diet-wise: I ask the question "Did any traditional societies consume this, and if so, in what form?" In the case of cod liver oil, there were several traditional societies that used it, so I think it is safe to consume so long as it is prepared in a traditional way. Then once I start using something, I try to pay special attention to my body and whether or not I feel better or worse. Some things work wonders for some people, but make others feel awful. Everyone is different. Then the nest step is to keep paying attention over time, and this is the thing I struggle with the most. I'd like to think that once I find something that works, I'm done having to figure it out. But inevitably, my needs change over time, so I have to be open to re-evaluating my diet over time.

One random link you may like is here:

Unknown said...

Hi Sarah,

Experts do tend to argue quite a bit. I wonder how our current dietary debate will be seen by society in 100 years. I wonder if they'll look at us like we see the medieval doctors who cured by trying to drain the evil spirits from the blood. Comparing modern research to historical diet does seem like a wise standard.

When you titled the link, "One random link..." I thought it was going to be unrelated to the conversation. I was expecting something like Why Marsupials Don't Climb Trees, but I was pleasantly surprised that it's about not over-thinking your nutrition. There is a mountain of information that sometimes hurts more than it helps; a lesson I really needed to learn. So I decided to put on my cyber mountain climbing gear and head up the west face.

The article immediately sent me rolling off the "Does my juicer kill enzymes" cliff, stretched to its limit the lanyard held. Suspended mid-air I continued to read. The sensible tone of the author brought back my footing. The rocks were dry and the grip was firm when suddenly a gust of "go eat McDonald's" wind sent me sliding towards a crevasse. Had it not been for my old buddy, eating at McDonald's is not too smart, to belay the fall, I would've certainly been done for.

All was smooth when a team higher up the mountain carelessly started to shed weight. First came a list of healthy food options which I easily dodged. It didn't even tempt me to research them. Then came a flurry of sleep 8 hours, have one bowel movement a day and get your temperature to 98.6 degree. I had to use all my skill to keep from writing it down. My first instructor, Ms. Hazard's words rang in my mind, "Three points of contact, young man. Three points of contact." Unable to write while simultaneously holding pad and pen with one hand, I put away the thought.

My line of sight was blocked by the edge of a ridge just two feet ahead. It was the highest visible point on the mountain, but seventy two years of mountain climbing experience have taught me that the next ridge is not the last ridge; there is always something more. Knowing this, I braced myself for the long article ahead. When I peaked passed the ridge I found the summit. There was nothing more. I was at the end.

The author brought me to the point where the arduous inching up the mountain of knowledge need not be encumbered by "dietary philosophy" and that "health authorities" were often not ropes to cling, but weight to shed. I don't know if this high plateau is the end of my search, but I will enjoy the warm, easy sun for a little while.

Sarah, thanks for the link!

Sarah Smith said...

Wow Gabriel, what a poetic description! This certainly made me smile this morning. I'm also enjoying the warm, easy sun at the top.

Jenny said...

I used to take CLO too. I stopped after I became to realize the drawbacks of the PUFAs. Weston Price only used it in combination with butter oil. D3 is now available much cheaper and in an coconut oil or olive oil base and is better for you.


Unknown said...

Hi Jenny,

Dr. Peat is awesome. Thanks for the link.

D3 is a good, but there is a little risk to it. Dr. Joseph Mercola interviewed an expert in vitamin K, Dr. Cees Vermeer at In that interview Dr. Vermeer explained certain dangers vitamin D. He said it is a calcium transporter and if it's not properly conducted it will move calcium from the bones into the arteries and create blockages.

It's the long interview but the point regarding D3 is that it needs a specific form of Vitamin K2 to work properly, that form is MK7. The best source of MK7 is Natto (fermented soy beans). There are other sources which are not nearly as good as natto, such as fermented cheese.

I hope this helps.

Kaydee said...

Interesting post. My two younger kids love fermented CLO and my 10 yr. old takes it with a chase of lime juice just fine. We've noticed no ill effects. I'd be interested in this new raw oil you refer to, but found out that they are charging $65 for only 5 oz., which makes it $104 (plus shipping?) for 8 oz. vs the $37 shipped I am paying now for fermented. Can't do that.

Sarah Smith said...

Yes it is pricey, but I think the recommended dosage is actually less, so I am hoping it will balance out. We currently have a bottle of the ratfish liver oil, and it has such a mild taste. My youngest LOVES it, and his sister takes it without complaining or making a sour face (which she never did with the fermented CLO). But I know some people also do fine with the fermented, even though we didn't.

Yossif said...

Hello, I'm curious how you might get an upset stomach from fermented CLO... Me and my girlfriend take it almost daily and while yes, it tastes terrible, we've never gotten nausea from it. No one I know who takes it has had any problems. Perhaps you should try it now after having been off it for such a long time?

It's been well known since ancient times that it's best to cycle on and off from fermented foods so your body doesn't grow resistant to the benefits. Perhaps before saying homeopathy was the cure all, you should try to get back on them? I personally think homeopathy is snake oil anyways...

More experimentation is needed before we assume anything!


Sarah Smith said...

Hi Yossif,
I think the nausea from the FCLO was caused by the rotting bits of liver left in the final product (that is detailed more in Archie's article, which I linked to in the post above). While I know many people who have no issues taking FCLO, I also know plenty of others who have also had digestive problems with taking it, especially in the GAPS community.

As for homeopathy, it is easy to assume it is snake oil. I used to think the same thing, and there are plenty of people out there who say it must be placebo effect or that there is no way it could work because of how the remedies are made. But as I've done my own research and tried homeopathy within my family, I have learned that it really does work and that it works amazingly.

For instance, my daughter (now almost 6 years old) has been prone to catching lots of colds and flus for her whole life. As in, if there was ever anyone even slightly sick in her vicinity, she would always catch it and be ten times worse than anyone else. She would get 8-10 illnesses a year, and often had lingering coughs for 2-3 weeks each time.

Her diet has always been excellent (we started eating strict Nourishing Traditions before she was conceived and then we did GAPS starting when she was 3.5 years old). She's taken CLO or FCLO all her life until we stopped last summer. But as of now, she hasn't had a single illness in over 5 months. That is huge for her, and we were never even close to that previously no matter how great her diet or how much CLO she was taking. And she has even been around sick people multiple times, and still not caught anything. She has also had weight gain problems her whole life (and she had actually lost weight in the months leading up to starting homeopathic treatment), and this is another area that has been helped tremendously since we started her homeopathic constitutional treatment.

One big argument I hear is that homeopathy is just a placebo effect. That can not be true, because placebos only ever have positive effects, whereas homeopathy can cause negative consequences and aggravations. Homeopathy has also been shown to work on very young babies and animals, which are two groups that can't exhibit placebo effects.

I admit that we don't scientifically know everything we need to know to understand fully how homeopathy works. It works on the quantum level, and science is just scratching the surface on how things work at the quantum level. But a lack of scientific understanding does not mean that it doesn't work; it only means that we can't fully understand how or why it works yet. Anyhow, that is just my two cents.

Anonymous said...

Tons of people have raging success with FCLO, so don't give it up on someone else's account. It's all about finding what is right for you!

Eileen said...

Although I do well with the FCLO, I'm glad to hear there is another alternative coming on the market. In the past year, demand has increased so much that the FCLO is getting harder to buy. It's no longer available in bulk (so no discounts) and my last purchase is on backorder and I don't know when I'll receive it. I'm curious to try Archie's oil. Please let us know when it's available.

Anonymous said...

We (adults & child) take the Nordic Naturals Childrens DHA. It's light coloured like you mentioned. We've very happy with it. From what I understand the are an ethical company who only specialise in fish oils (rather than a supplements brand that have added on fish oil). The also have sustainable practises e.g. they don't make any krill oil products. I have tried lots of different fish oils but we keep coming back to the Nordic Naturals cod liver oil

mandi said...

I did not do well on FCLO either. Seriously- the last time I took it I thought I was dying. I couldn't breathe, my heart was racing and I was so sick to my stomach. It was a nightmare. Just the smell of the cinnamon tingle can put me over the edge. Nope- will never take it again.

Rebecca said...

I am on my second week taking the FCLO capsules from blue ice. I do not feel any different (and I also don't feel sick from taking them). I just really expected to feel this burst of energy and less joint pain (shoulders and hips). Maybe my expectations were a bit too high. My pain comes from physical issues, not systemic or chronic issues. (Accidents, sports related injuries, etc). But I still had high hopes.

Another thing I have been taking for over 9 months now, is Protandim. IT is supposed to boost your immune system and take years off your life, etc etc. A miracle antioxidant thing. I don't feel any different.

I know I already live a healthy lifestyle, but maybe I am just a person who isn't affected very much by certain things. I do find that hard to believe, because just eating some raw cacao (homemade chocolate made with coconut oil, raw cacao powder, stevia/raw honey, vanilla) and the theobromine in the raw cacao powder (a stimulant) makes my heart palpitate and I get real jittery. So I only eat small amounts at a time. I am sensitive to chemicals (even natural ones) and such (my body reacts to them, I don't have chemical sensitivity though like some folks have).

Anyway, I have a two month supply of the capsules, and I will try it through, 'til it is gone. Hopefully it is doing something inside me :)

Sarah Smith said...

I also take Protandim. I didn't notice anything until taking it daily for about two months. Then I noticed that my afternoon energy slump was gone. On days when I forget to take it, sure enough, I get very tired in the afternoon.

Lisa Jackson said...

You might to check out raw salmon oil.

Because it's mostly unprocessed, it still has its natural vitamins (A & D) plus it has astaxanthin and omega 3s.

Vital Choice is a good brand but North American Herb & Spice is also good. (Though I prefer Vital Choice)

Swanson Vitamins and Amazon sell both brands.

Stephanie said...

Hi Sarah.
I really love your blog and I'm glad I found it. I just found out I am pregnant and I feel I need to take some sort of fish oil. Until Corganics cod liver oil is ready for sale (I signed up via email to be notified when it is ready for sale) do you recommend any fish oil at all? Skate Liver Oil? Ratfish Oil? Krill Oil?

Thank you.

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Stephanie,
In the meantime until the coorganics CLO is ready, I am keeping a bottle of the ratfish liver oil on the shelf. If I was pregnant, I'd probably make a point to take that daily, along with lots of grassfed butter (CLO and grassfed butter work synergistically together, so I would assume it's good to have butter alongside the ratfish oil too).

If I really wanted a CLO for now while waiting for the other to become available, I'd probably move to the next one on the WAPF list of recommended CLO (skipping the fermented CLO since I know I have issues with it). That list is here:

And it lists the following as the next alternative after the FCLO:
GOOD (and available in Stores):

Carlson soft gel Cod Liver Oil Super 1,000 mg capsules
Nature's Answer liquid cod liver oil
NOW double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules
Sonne's Cod Liver Oil
Swanson double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules
Twin Labs non-emulsified liquid Cod Liver Oil

Annaliese said...

I was very distressed this morning when my 14mo daughter had an allergic reaction to the FCLO. She has reacted to prawns in the past, but I wasn't sure if the FCLO would be a problem. Well her face blew up like a balloon and I had to give her an antihistamine.

I was wondering if you knew of any alternatives to FCLO that would provide an almost similar benefit?

Misti said...

My family takes the FCLO with no issues. Before the kids could swallow capsules we had to find ways to get them to eat it. Now we all take capsules and my 4 1/2 chews them up. I am glad that we haven't had any issues with them at all. I appreciate hearing your story and it is good to keep in mind but will still be taking ours.

Sarah Smith said...

Sorry to hear it! I keep a bottle of the ratfish liver oil on the shelf, but it sounds like maybe any fish would give her issues?

Liver (beef or chicken) is always a good choice for getting in tons of nutrition. My son particularly liked liver this way when he was that age:

And adding a little raw grated liver to any dish (or bottle) is another option. (For using raw liver, make sure it has been frozen for at least 14 days prior to use, which will destroy any pathogens that may be present).

Anonymous said...

I read all these comments of taste etc but I purchased anyway as I do not necessarily accept what others are saying and found it to be no different than when I was a kid over 70 years ago. No repeats etc. My husband who is older has no problems either. Many things we do are not seen as positive or neg for some time. For example smoking does not noticeably effect you immediately but over time it does so why would we expect anything different from the vitamins or food etc we take. We should always continue to research and decide what is or is not benefit to us. We can not let a Doctor or some other person make that decision. We have to take responsibility our self.

Sarah Smith said...

I absolutely agree. Everyone has to decide for themselves what works best for them. We took the fermented CLO for several years before figuring out that it caused us digestive issues for us. I know plenty of others who have no problems with it, and also plenty of others who do. Everyone is different.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sarah,
I was just wondering with all the concern with regard to mercury levels and the NRDC rating Alaskan cod as moderate in levels, recommending six serving or less a month your then views on taking this as a supplement
Appreciate your thoughts

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this post! I just started taking FCLO after reading about the numerous benefits, but unfortunately it made me super sick. I only took it twice, and I really want to make myself take it, but I just can't after the digestive issues. It's really a breath of fresh air to know I am not the only one who suffered negative effects.

blessedmom said...

I really enjoyed this post... we tried the FCLO and it was really nasty! The only way my kids would take it was doused in butter and honey:) LOL! However, I just now found out that I am 5 weeks pregnant, we are all on GAPS (mostly;) and I am looking at the Weston Price diet for pregnancy- what do i do about the FCLO? currently we are just taking fish oil (nordic naturals) and I add Vitamin D to that with a spoonful of butter... Do you have any thoughts?

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Stephanie,
In the meantime until the coorganics CLO is ready, I am keeping a bottle of the ratfish liver oil on the shelf. If I was pregnant, I'd probably make a point to take that daily, along with lots of grassfed butter (CLO and grassfed butter work synergistically together, so I would assume it's good to have butter alongside the ratfish oil too).

If I really wanted a CLO for now while waiting for the other to become available, I'd probably move to the next one on the WAPF list of recommended CLO (skipping the fermented CLO since I know I have issues with it). That list is here:

And it lists the following as the next alternative after the FCLO:
GOOD (and available in Stores):

Carlson soft gel Cod Liver Oil Super 1,000 mg capsules
Nature's Answer liquid cod liver oil
NOW double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules
Sonne's Cod Liver Oil
Swanson double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules
Twin Labs non-emulsified liquid Cod Liver Oil

Anonymous said...

My family has been taking Green Pasture Products Fermented Cod Liver Oil for 7 years. We have never had any issues with it and would not miss a our regular daily dose. I am personally very disappointed with the article written by Archie Welch. I don't believe it is ever appropriate to attack a product from one company just to promote your own.

Sarah Smith said...

As I described in the article, my family also took Green Patures CLO for years. We used the original Blue Ice from 2006 through part of 2010. And then we used the fermented CLO for 2 years. It took us a long time to figure out that we were having problems from the FCLO, because I wanted to believe that it worked for us since it is so widely touted. I don't have any vested reason to attack FCLO, but am sharing our unbiased experiences.

Archie Welch is certainly not attacking a product from one company just to promote his own. When he and I first talked about problems with FCLO, he had no connections whatsoever with selling cod liver oil. Rather, he and his son had problems with the FCLO, just as we did, and he also knew of others who had problems. In the last year, he has gone out on a limb to try to find a better source of CLO that would work better for those who aren't able to use the FCLO. I personally find his article to be very informative, and am glad to know more of the history of cod liver oil and it's use throughout history.

Sarah Harkins said...

Sarah, I sent this article to Green Pastures and recently, they sent out an email about a study on raw cod liver oil. The results are somewhat disturbing. I was planning on buying the raw cod liver, but I don't think I should anymore. here's the link:
What do you think?

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Sarah,
I've seen this too. It doesn't make any sense to me that these oils are being tested for energy, rather than nutrient-composition. I personally don't have any confidence that there is a reliable testing methodology for testing the energy in an oil, or even that the results mean anything in terms of health. I myself am awaiting results of tests that make more sense, such as actual nutrient compositions in the oils instead of energy testing.

I also asked Archie about this last week, and he was a bit confused as to what was actually tested. Since the raw cod liver oil isn't yet on the market, where did they even get it from to test it? There are quite a few things about this that don't seem to make any sense to me...

Sarah Harkins said...

ok, thanks for the analysis. I didn't even know what they were talking about. Please keep us updated on this! There are few of us who have enough knowledge to sort all this out. It seems I not only need a degree in nutrition to feed my family, now I need a doctorates to keep them healthy!! Your website is invaluable.

Stephanie said...

Thank you for replying, Sarah. I cannot get true grassfed butter at this time. Do you think Organic Valley's Cultured Butter is good enough to work with the ratfish oil?

Anonymous said...

I had the completely opposite experience with FCLO. For one, I took the pills since i knew that fermented fish oil would taste bad. Secondly I had zero digestive issues from it whereas with unfermented I would burp up the oil all day (and I was taking the highest quality stuff). My skin got very soft and I stopped getting sunburned. I personally won't write off the product simply because some people had a bad reaction to it. Every body is different and will react differently to different things. I have to wonder if some of why you felt so repelled by it was taking it in liquid form. Thats not for the faint of heart.

Sarah Smith said...

Yes, I think any nicely yellow butter works. I use Kerrygold, Organic Valley, or Kalona Supernatural. The yellow color shows you that it is at least mostly grassfed. (The yellow color diminishes some in the winter months in the Organic Valley and Kalona Supernatural, since there isn't much of a fresh grass supply.)

Sarah Smith said...

I absolutely agree that what works for some may not for others. If you look to see what the recommended daily amount is for a nursing mother (1 Tablespoon!), you will see why I had to take it in liquid form. It would take over 20 pills to get to that amount in a day!

I also do not doubt that these large amounts are part of the reason for the digestive problems, but the fact remains that I was able to take the same amount of the non-fermented Blue Ice CLO with no issues whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

I'm the same way - I've been trying to stomach the cinnamon flavored FCLO but I get a mild stomach ache each time, and it makes be burp numerous times after each dose - not very pleasant. I'm glad to hear the unflavored worked for you, I'm going to try that instead.

Anonymous said...

For about a week, I took the plain liquid FCLO (B.Ice)using the attached oral syringe - 2ml per day. I totally regret it. It worked great for my partner and my pets, but I had a reaction to it. It was definitely the fermented component that was the problem, as I have used other brands of cod liver oil before with no problems. It's been about 2 months and I'm still not fully over the diarrhea. Also, I came down with a sinus infection with my cold which never has happened to me before. And worst of all, the back of my throat (due using syringe) is bumpy and swollen, and my lower throat (spincter perhaps) feels like I have a perpetual lump in my throat that I cannot swallow away. Originally it felt like I was having an allergic reaction and my throat closing up. This was way not worth it for me. I have realized that the 'exotic' quality of a lot of 'health' supps and foods is misled. We should eat clean and simply with minimal amounts of potent sour, spicy, etc herbs and whatnot. Anyhow, I guess it is hit and miss, but I would recommend that if you do try it, listen to your initial reaction on days one and two. If your body says no, then don't keep pushing and forcing yourself to get used to it, you may get worse : (

Maria Atwood, CNHP said...

I think this article is very one-sided. Its all about: "Let's not take fermented cod liver oil" I wish that when people post things like this, they would invite the maker to write and have both articles on the website side by side, not just a response from the maker. I've taken it since its inception, and have had many, many of clients on it with incredibly wonderful life-changing results. My recommendation is for people to be cautious of this article and do your own study with the maker.

Maria Atwood, CNHP

Sarah Smith said...

I disagree that the article is one-sided. I described how we took cod liver oil for years, and that we had good benefits from it for years. But later, we did start having problems from the fermented CLO. This is just factual on what we experienced. I also know lots of people that have had great benefits from FCLO. My mother still takes it for her joint pain, and I still find that it seems to make a big difference for people that are just moving into health through nutrition. But, I also think it is fair to share our experiences so people know there is the possibility that they may have problems with it. I have been contacted by so many people who are relieved to finally have someone acknowledge that FCLO can sometimes cause problems. People with compromised digestion, such as GAPS kids, can have real problems from the FCLO. It took me a long time to be willing to recognize the FCLO was causing my family problems, because everyone in the community is shouting from the rooftops how great FCLO is. I didn't want to believe it was causing me problems, but I finally realized that it was indeed causing issues. To me, there is nothing one-sided with just sharing our experience, especially when there is already so much pro-CLO information out there. I even used to write such information myself before I realized the problems we were having from the FCLO.

Angel said...

Thanks for this article, Sarah. I tried taking Green Pasture FCLO a couple of different times, had to stop both times due to burping up (cinnamon flavored burps ... yum!). I never had a problem with the flavor (I liked it, actually) but my gut just didn't want to process it. For whatever reason(s) it just doesn't work for everyone.

I always like to read articles that challenge the mainstream WAPF/Paleo/traditional points of view ... generally they shed some light on my own health, or, like this one, are proof that I am not alone in experiencing issues with what is supposed to be a superfood.

Anonymous said...

End of March, Still no oils! What gives??

Sarah Smith said...

Last I heard earlier in March, they are doing final product testing right now.

Lisa C said...

Interesting article, thanks for sharing. I am particularly interested in the fact that there were other traditional methods of making cod liver oil (I had suspected as much). My son and I have no issues with the FCLO (although it is yucky, we can handle it), but my husband won't touch it. And I know a lot of people have had trouble with the fermented CLO. Seems like this could be a good option for a lot of people. I may stick with the FCLO because of the increased vitamin content though.

Happy at last! said...

I'm doing gaps to cure food allergies, extreme adhd, and severe depression. (I also studied homeopathy and use it.) I push the healing, so my body has produced some bizarre, some hilarious, and some downright terifying symptoms but its WORKING! For example, I went from NEEDING 200 mcgs of Huperzine-A (divided, of course, and yes I know that's waaay to much) to being unable to tolerate any in a very short time. (6 weeks maybe?) I no longer need GABA (except rarely to correct a mistake) and I actually cut my ritalin from 40 (sometimes 50!) mgday to only 30 today! And I functioned well!
The st important thing about gaps is: the into diet is REQUIREDfor optimal result. It was for me anyway. Actually, I've been in stage 3 of the intro for about 6 weeks living only on the soups and eating GOBS of fat. I thought that'all I would ever want, but suddenly I quit devouring tons of coconut butter and now I'm craving carrot juice. I feel better than I ever have in my 45 years!

Anonymous said...

Sure there are benefits from Cod Liver Oil but a simple balanced diet is what is really required. People like to eat rubbish and then think they are being healthy by taking all sorts of drugs and supplements, sold to them on the TV by companies with only one agenda (money). People are so gullible. You say that you have been off CLO for six months but thanks to homeopathy you have not been sick. If you had eaten McDonalds for six months and taken nothing you would probably not have been sick, you are fooling yourself if you thin it is thanks to homeopathy. I have retired and in my whole working life had only one week off sick as a result of an accident with boiling water. I simply eat a balanced diet and occasionally take CLO as I do not always eat much oily fish. Essentially I don't need to think about food too much, there are a lot of people out there obsessing about what they should or should not eat. Stress over what they are eating is probably more of a danger.

Sarah Smith said...

The reason I say that homeopathy has kept us from being sick is that, with the use of homeopathy, we are sick way less now, even than when we were taking CLO daily. Homeopathy has boosted our immune systems dramatically. For instance, my daughter has always had a rather poor immune system, despite having a very good diet and daily cod liver oil since she was a baby. In previous years, my daughter would typically get about 8 colds and 2 stomach flus every year. Now we've been using homeopathy on her since last October, and in that last 7 months she has had two colds and that is all (and they were very minor compared to previously). This is a HUGE turn-around from previous years.

Anonymous said...

From what I have read: not just any fat will do for absorption of fat soluble vitamins. Some examples of fatty acids needed for fat soluable vitamins is Omega 3 and DHA which are more abundant in certain animal fats and quite scarce or non-existant in vegetable fats. Maybe CLO is popular because it has a wider spectrum of fats than animal or vegetable fats. Sorry if my facts aren't perfect here. Generally, I have read that the body doesn't need a lot of specific fats for fat soluable vitamin uptake, but the fat it does need is mostly absent from vegetables.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sarah,
Thank you for your blog post. Do I understand that you did two things at one time? 1) you stopped ANY cod liver oil and 2) you started taking homeopathics

If I got what you said right, it seems like a person would have to consider both changes you made to determine which caused the improvement in your daughter's health? How to rule out one or the other seems very difficult.

I know it sounds basic and her problems already seem to resolving themselves, but does your daughter have vitamin C running through her system before she comes in contact with others? Maybe she needs more C than most.

I read everything on your post from top to bottom--it's been great and I loved everyone's contributions.

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Leah,
We actually stopped the cod liver oil a few months before we started her homeopathic constitutional treatment.

It is very obvious to me that the homeopathic treatment is working wonders for my daughter. I can tell a dramatic difference in many aspects (and I can tell since I've tried not having her on the correct remedy, and I see an immediate backsliding in all of these areas when she is not on her remedy):
-Her behavior is better (she tends to be overly emotional, and homeopathy makes a big difference in this).
-Her moods are much more even and happy
-Her appetite is MUCH better when she is on her constitutional remedy. Her weight had plateaued and she had even lost a little in the 6 months previous to starting homeopathic treatment. Now she has gained over 4 pounds in 7 months. 4 pounds may not sound like much, but that is a LOT for her because she has always been very underweight. Even with the weight gain, she is right now only 32 pounds at 6 years old. The difference in her appetite is very dramatic; she goes from picking at her food and hardly eating when she is not on her remedy, to actually asking for seconds and thirds when she is on her remedy.
-She is much less clumsy when on her remedy. Without it, she easily hurts herself several times every day; with it she can actually go a day or two without hurting herself and that has never happened since she learned to walk.
-Her immune system is dramatically better, as I described above.
-She is much less argumentative and more cooperative when on her remedy.

I know all of this sounds too good to be true from just one remedy. But I've learned through our experiences that the benefits of the correct homeopathic constitutional remedy affect all aspects of our health: physical, mental, and emotional. You really have to see it to believe it. And my daughter is just one example, as the rest of the members of our family are also seeing big improvements from constitutional treatment.

Anonymous said...

I take both the unflavored FCLO and the butter oil for about two years now and I have very good results. The syringe is only for measuring and you shouldn't have used it to administer the oil. I take 5ml of FCLO and 2.5ml of the butter oil every morning on the spoon and wash it down with a glass of ice water mixed with lemon juice. I tried the flavored oil but I didn't like it.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this article. I began to have absolutely terrible heartburn when taking Green Pasture's FCLO. When I emailed the company to find out what's going on and if there was anything I could do to eliminate this, I was pooh-poohed away by two different people including Dave Wetzel himself saying he'd "never heard of" this happening. Since I was shoved aside I kept taking the FCLO thinking it was in my head and my heartburn was from something else I was eating. Turns out I have GERD, and actually did damage to myself taking the oils for as long as I did.

I wouldn't trust Green Pasture at all if they don't even know their product can do this to their customers. Their reputation took a nosedive for me and I won't be recommending them to anyone anymore.

I started taking the FCLO and butter oil because of the benefits to tooth health and my skin. I guess I'll have to research alternatives.

Anonymous said...

Gerson recommends Flax Seed oil for absorbtion of fat soluble vitamins. He discovered this after he wrote his book.

Anonymous said...

When is the new product expected to come on the market?

Sarah Smith said...

Last I heard, it is in final product testing. So hopefully soon!

Anonymous said...

I stopped reading after "homeopathic"... Sorry, if u believe in homeopathy you cannot be a reliable source of info :(

Anna, Poland

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Anna,
I, like you, used to believe that homeopathy must not really work, since there are so any naysayers about it. You might like to read this article that links to some studies and more info about t really working.

Anonymous said...

My boys and I take FCLO and have had no issues. I've read that if an individual has improper digestion due to imbalanced gut flora or leaky gut, FCLO might be too potent for them and they could have a bad reaction.

I really love your input on homeopathy. We are working with an NP and using constitutional homeopathy for my boys, one of whom is two years old with leaky gut, severe eczema, and tooth decay. We are seeing wonderful improvements after just six weeks.

Anonymous said...

A good alternative to fermented cod liver oil is Vital Choice's salmon oil. It too has vitamins A & D, plus omega 3, and astaxanthin.

See here:

essential oils the problem????? said...

THis was great thank you all for posting. I can't help but wonder if the MAIN culprit is essential oils!!!! I will have to call the company and find out IF the flavoring they use are essential oils or not. IF they do use essential oils for flavoring i really think that *might* be the problem here. Essential Oils are NOT for consumption, they are SUPER concentrated, and in fact were NEVER meant to be ingested either orally or even topically (on skin). They are like a drug, in that they are so concentrated it's not possible to consume that much mint physically that's in one drop, just for example, if it takes say 10 lbs of mint for 1 drop of oil. Again, this is just my gut response, i DO NOT know if they are infact using essentail oils, i did read that on one of their product labels and am having a hard time figuring out if the others are essentials too. I wonder if folks that have problems with those who take the flavored, and those who take the non-flavored are those that have no reaction??? No one has discussed this so far so i'm sooo curious now! ;-)

Thanks for all the great info here!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this article.
I was wondering how you are doing on the ratfish oil, and if you have noticed any differences to the Green Pastures oil.
Also, how much of the ratfish oil you take.
I've been meaning to try this oil for a while now, though I may have to wait a little longer as they seem to be out of stock right now. The price caught me off guard, but I suppose you take less, so it probably work out to be about the same.

Sarah Smith said...

None of us have taken the ratfish oil regularly. More like whenever someone asks for it. My 3-year-old seems to ask for it once or twice a month. Just a few drops on his tongue at a time, and he always says "Mmm".

Anonymous said...

Thanks Sarah!

Unknown said...

Sarah Thank you deeply for everything you shared here tonight. I found it greatly informative and helpful.Really enjoyed how you took time to answer each person even if they were being strongly critical you still gave a good reply . God bless you

Christine said...

Thanks for the article. I have been wanting to purchase Fermented Cod Liver Oil but couldn't get myself to do it. I live intuitively and my body is always right but the mind often wants to override that. I never force anything on my body. I trust my body.

Mom of Many Blessings said...

Are you going to share what homeopathic remedy your daughter has been on? Thanks!

Sarah Smith said...

In Classical Homeopathy (which is what we are using), the selection of remedies is VERY individualized. This means that, out of thousands of remedies, the single remedy my daughter is taking was selected specifically for her. (And the same for the rest of our family, so we all use different remedies as selected by the homeopath.)

Therefore, telling you what remedy she is taking would not really be helpful unless you or your family happens to need the same precise remedy. Some of the things taken into account in selecting her remedy were her crowded teeth, poor weight gain, specific behavior issues (such as obstinacy and temper tantrums with kicking and screaming), the fact that she was born with hair on her back and neck (plus long hair on her head at birth), and even her sleep patterns/positions. All of these things help define my daughter's constitution and are thereby taken into account when finding her constitutional remedy.

Finding the correct constitutional remedy for a person has to be done by a trained, very experienced homeopath. I myself have been actively studying homeopathy for nearly two years, and am still not ready to select constitutional remedies. (But I have gotten good experience in finding remedies for acute ailments such as colds, flus, first-aid, etc.)

I hope this is helpful!

Jen said...

I actually started taking FCLO and ghee two weeks ago, and just noticed the last two trips to the bathroom have included blood in the stool. (Sorry, probably TMI.) I came across this post because I'm looking for answers, as I have no idea of any doctor who might have a clue about the effects of FCLO. Have you by chance heard of anyone with this kind of reaction? I'm hoping it's just the FCLO and not something altogether more serious, but I can't come up with any reason why FCLO and ghee would cause such a reaction. I'd love to hear if you or anyone else might have some insight into this.

Sarah Smith said...

I've never heard of that, but perhaps you could stop taking it and see what happens. Everyone is different, so who knows?

On a side note, beets and cranberries have given us a few scares; coming out the back end they both make it look like bloody stool!

Mark said...

Thank you for the very informative post. We’re taking cod liver oil daily. Fermented cod liver oil seems too gross to me, thus I’ve been trying to find another alternative. Unfortunately most brands have naturally occurred in cod liver oil vitamins A and D removed during purification process. In most cases synthetic vitamins are added back which defeats the whole purpose of cod liver oil in my opinion. I’ve contacted several major brands, and found that only Carlson adds back a natural vitamin D, although from another source (lanolin).

Recently I found that Sonne's Old Fashioned Cod Liver Oil #5 is a very good alternative to fermented cod liver oil. Hopefully more brands will start producing old fashioned cod liver oil too.

Unknown said...

Any news on when Archie's EVCLO will be available?

Unknown said...

Thank you, Sarah. I came across your blog while researching what natural remedies to take for a urinary tract infection and FCLO came up. I have taken the plain liquid FCLO (along with grass fed butter)from time to time over the last several years with no ill effects and have benefited by enjoying good health.. no colds, flu, illnesses to speak of. I usually switch between the FCLO (because it's so expensive) and use the Carlson Super CLO gel caps (also with some grass fed butter).

This past year I found that the FCLO was extremely dark and more foul tasting, so I thank you for bringing to light that the "bits and pieces" that wind up in the processing are responsible for this change in color and taste. That said, I switched to the krill oil/astaxanthan combination on Dr. Mercola's recommendation. I have found that the fishy taste of the krill oil repeats on me. No heartburn, but usually a fishy burp within 15 minutes or so. So I think I'll go back to the FCLO. My trick is to take the FCLO along with some mellow miso. It really kills the taste and has benefits it's own right. I try to have it with a meal that includes using grass fed butter on some vegetables or just take a spoonful of butter.

Your blog is most informative and I appreciate all the comments.

Thank you,
Lisa Corwin

Sarah Smith said...

I'll check and see!

ejejmama said...

Have you heard of anyone having problems with the FCLO a day or two after taking it? I used to take the butter oil/FCLO blend and didn't have any problems. However I started taking the plain FCLO a couple of weeks ago and have had serious nausea issues on and off since then that lasts anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Not right upon taking, but maybe a day later or a few times a week. I stopped taking it and got a little better and then took tried it again and was seriously nauseous the next day. I thought it was some other issue, but now I am wondering if it is the FCLO...

Sarah Smith said...

I haven't heard of anyone having problems that far after, but maybe it just depends on how quickly your digestive system works and what part of your system reacts to it...

Sarah Smith said...

They are targeting July for release. I am very excited to now know some nutritional info on the new EVCLO:
"Consumers of the Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil can expect 3,000 - 4,000 IU’s of vitamin A retinol, 400 - 450 IU’s of vitamin D3 (cholocalciferol) and high levels of omega 3 fats per teaspoon."

The new website is:

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Sarah,
I am very excited to now know some nutritional info on the new EVCLO:
"Consumers of the Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil can expect 3,000 - 4,000 IU’s of vitamin A retinol, 400 - 450 IU’s of vitamin D3 (cholocalciferol) and high levels of omega 3 fats per teaspoon."

The new website is:

United against said...

I am glad to have read this. I found out about fermented cod liver quite some time ago. I think at the time the company was using farmed cod liver oil. I guess this is why they fermented the oil to begin with. I never did take it though as I wanted more of the EPA/DHA oils so stuck with fish oil. I went to Dr. Rons site where he sells his own vitamins and suggest people take fermented cod liver oil for that vitamin a and vitamin d that occur naturally in cod liver oil. Because of this I bought the capsule version that has the cod liver oil and butter in the same capsule. I also took another one they sell as well. I did not take the liquid but on this Doctors website he says to take the capsules to start with as it does have an effect on the throat by taking the liquid. I am glad you offered an alternative for us. I went to the website and they are not selling any products yet but look forward to taking it when they do.

Anonymous said...

Please note - fish oil is very hard for people who have had their gallbladder removed or have gallbladder issues. Dr. Tom Roselle, of Roselle Center for Healing in VA, recently commented on his radio show that there are different formulations of EPA and DHA that you can take in a non oil formula. The oil formulation goes for other oil suspension preparations of vitamins and minerals.

Joyfulmomof6 said...

I took FCLO all winter with no problems, although I was only taking 2 a day (I think I was supposed to take 4).

The cost is what stresses me out considerably, since we are a single income family with 6 children. I am very frugal and I find it hard to justify the cost. We eat very healthy anyway, and do lots of other immune booster supplements, and we use grass-fed butter.

What I am wondering if anyone knows another way to heal cavities? I was reading that FCLO and the grass fed butter would do it, but I really didn't see any miracle taking it for 9 months. I've never had a cavity until this past year (a beginning of one anyway) and I'd rather heal it naturally.

Anonymous said...

Just put my name on Archie's waiting list and am so relieved and excited at the same time!

I happen to find your post because I was googling whether FCLO gives one stomache aches. I chalked up the nausea to not liking the mint flavor. I had just taken it and started to wonder.

Thank you for this post and to everyone for such informative comments.

Anonymous said...

My experience with FCLO and menstrual bleeding:
I took FCLO daily for 3-1/2 months. Normally, when I take straight A and D, I get nosebleeds so I don't take those types of vitamins. But since FCLO was advertised to be a whole food, I tried it and was very happy to report no nosebleeds. I continued to take it in capsule form. For the first 1-1/2 months I took 3 capsules per day (a little more than 1/4 tsp). Then, having no ill effects, I increased my intake to 5 capsules per day for the next 5 weeks. Since I wanted to get up to the recommended dosage listed in the book "Cure Tooth Decay", I upped my intake to 9 capsules per day. This was about two weeks before my period began. My period was heavier than usual without stopping causing more frequent pad changes than usual. I thought that the bleeding would subside like it always does but the bleeding did not let up. Even after the 2nd day I was still having to change my heavy flow pad every hour. The gushing went a 3rd day. I stopped the oil the 4th day and the bleeding finally subsided that night. I was also taking K2 (natto) and apparently that was not helping. In a normal cylce, I use a heavy pad the first 2 days and change it every half day. Anyway, that is my wierd experience. When I look back, my period was a little heavier in the month that I was taking 5 capsules. I have ceased the FCLO and my menstrual flow has gone back to normal. So, I guess I got much more than a nosebleed. I wonder if anyone else has experienced something like this.

Anonymous said...

Try a good quality coconut oil - very praiseworthy in numerous ways. I've read it is beneficial in prevention of cavities and some people swoosh up to a Tbl daily in their mouth before swallowing, like Angelina Jolie. We mainly use coconut oil or ghee for sauteing/baking, but I even rub a little on my legs and feet after bathing before bed. My poor dry skin loves it - and talk about smooth? Wow!
Check out this site for natural oral health:

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Sarah, at the Healthy Home Economist blog, once reported that it is important to ensure adequate intake of arachidonic acid by eating foods such as egg yolks, liver, and meat fats to balance out the EPA in fish oil. Otherwise, excess bleeding can be a problem. Perhaps this is what you experienced.

Anonymous said...

Been on FCLO for 8 months and have not had any problems. When I was taking the Fermented Butter Oil/Cod Liver Oil regular flavor-gel form I would drink small glass of homemade carrot juice after covers the fishy taste. Followed by a full glass of filtered room temp water. I now take the cinnamon flavor-gel form and have no problems either. Only because I like the cinnamon taste better. Reminds me of the lil Valentines Day cinnamon heart candies. I eat only whole nutrient dense foods, grass fed meats and fats. My blood work including cholesterol is back to normal and even good. Prior to implementing the above it was 300 (Chol)and despite all Medical doctors efforts only was getting worse. The FCLO has been instrumental in Healing and Sealing my gut, immune system and helping to rebalance my body and correcting some very serious post surgical infection complications western medicine doctors had no answers for. Anyone having issues should contact their naturopathic doctor immediately more likely then not a simple tweak in your regimen needs to be made.

Unknown said...

The use of cod liver oil goes back farther than you might think. Used primarily for nobility and soliders in the ancient Roman Empire, cod liver oil was thought to maintain strength.
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Anonymous said...

I sometimes don't understand why things like bacon, liver, kidney would be consumed.
Afterall, as far as my medical knowledge goes, I think that fat is the typical place where toxins are hidden away. Those that can be gotten rid of by urine are passed through the kidney. And those that cannot be hidden away are then stored in the liver.

So I would think these three must never be consumed.
But yet people eat liver and bacon and kidneys and swear by them.
How about some foie gras? (Liver Fat? Yummy with toxicity!!!)

Anonymous said...

I think the comparison test of green pastures is about the Nordic Naturals fish oil.

Anonymous said...

I think the comparison test of green pastures is about the Nordic Naturals fish oil.

Chris Hume said...

I was on the website you added to this post, and they have not yet come out with their cod liver oil. Is there a specific brand that you would recommend?

Mightyheidi said...

I would say that, if you are a Christian or Jew, Jesus never changed "unclean" animals to "clean", so the ratfish in the Norwegian company you state is still considered an unclean animal. I use Green Pastures, and they do still offer skate oil, but that is also "unclean". Not everybody goes by that theory, but I still stick with it, so we use the FCLO/butter oil blend. I'd be really tempted to try their cod liver oil that you suggested, but our family has done extremely well with the Green Pasture products--even healing our teeth, and I think part of that was when we read about adding the butter oil to improve teeth. I no longer will go to a dentist, haven't had the kids there in over a year and a half. My husband LOVES dentists, loves getting his teeth cleaned, etc., so he still goes. He was there yesterday, and remarked at his teeth looking amazing (no dentist has ever told him that, and he is 54!). He has only been on the butter oil about 6 weeks because he is a hard one to try something not prescribed by a dentist or doctor! LOL!

However, we have never had stomach upset due to the FCLO. You gotta know what works for you and your family. I have always had a sensitive stomach, and have IBS, but this isn't a trigger for me.

I found this article quite interesting...I like to hear real stories about real people. :) Thanks!

Sarah Smith said...

Yes, they are targeting July for release of the new cod liver oil, but there could always be delays. In the meantime, I would try any of the cod liver oils listed as good by the Weston Price Foundation. That list is:
GOOD (and available in Stores):

Carlson soft gel Cod Liver Oil Super 1,000 mg capsules
Nature's Answer liquid cod liver oil
NOW double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules
Sonne's Cod Liver Oil
Swanson double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules
Twin Labs non-emulsified liquid Cod Liver Oil

Anonymous said...

Sometimes it's all about the money. Big money. More money than anyone could dream of....

Anonymous said...


We also eat clean, but I was looking at their webpage and didn't see anything about a "ratfish" being used but an Atlantic Cod which has small scales and fins, making it a clean source. Here is where they talk about the fish they use on their webpage:

Please show me a source where they use ratfish if you have one because I earnestly want to know as I don't want to give my family an unclean supplement.

To the blogger, Any updates on when this will be available? Thanks!

Sarah Smith said...

The same company (Rosita) does sell ratfish oil. But the cod liver oil is a completely separate product that is being developed. Last I checked, the new EVCLO is hoped to be released in July (as in this month).

Anonymous said...

maybe your body is purging yeast...and it is a good thing..

Anonymous said...

i researched histamine, it is not in white fish for the most part so it is not typically found in cod. then, i called the company and histamine is tested each lot and there is never any histamine plus the person told me that histamine in food products is regulated. i researched several other points in posting area and much miss info... miss leading... too bad

Anonymous said...

My perception of the article was that it is very balanced. It relates one family's experiences and passes no judgment on others. I don't know where Ms. Atwood is able to read "Let's not take fermented cod liver oil", because those words aren't in the article. I didn't perceive that the author is campaigning for others to reject FCLO, but rather relating her family's experience. Why would a reader feel threatened or put off by someone simply relating their own personal experience while allowing that others' experiences may differ? There's an old saying, "Offense taken is as bad as offense intended." I read no words in this article which imply the author intended any offense, and I urge readers evaluating this article to refrain from finding offense where none was intended.

Anonymous said...

Homeopathy isn't something a person "believes in"; it's a science, with repeatable and well-documented results. I'd bought into the "debunker" argument that no atoms of the original substance are left in the highly-diluted homeopathic remedies, therefore they're just sugar pills with a placebo effect. Then I had a baby go through teething, and would invariably begin crying 1/2 hour after falling asleep (when the teeth would begin to grow). I tried the Hyland's Teething Tablets and they worked. The infant didn't know about the placebo effect, and I didn't know (at first) that the Hyland's Teething Tablets were a homeopathic remedy. After I paid closer attention to the label (after having achieved peace for a while), the FACT that they worked intrigued me and I did further research into homeopathic remedies. Debunkers like to poke at homeopathy and other targets of derision by saying that if the mechanism of action is poorly understood, then whatever remedy is mere snake oil. However, most harmaceuticals share that weakness, and for that matter, many of our bodies' processes are poorly understood or totally MISunderstood by mainstream medicine. If you always stop reading at the first instance of the word "homeopath..." then you cannot and will not ever cure your ignorance of this valuable healing modality.

Ria said...

Ppl need to do what works for them. My son immediately benefits from fclo and at best it does me no harm. I want to start investing in it again due to dental problems.

Anonymous said...

Competition works for the consumer. Is good to have companies compete which one is better, is only good news for us

Anonymous said...

Gabriel please understand that when it comes talking about this or anything that involves money, or power there are many forces at play. Why would you be concerned that some scientists said this or are saying that? We have the money making players which largely benefit from faking or manipulating studies to get people sick to profit off of them, or to prevent them from getting well.
Establishment is largely out to demonize, and to get vitamins, and anything that is natural as very dangerous, because it threatens the profits of Big Pharma. There are claims being made by them that are comical at best, like there are no evidence that organic food is any better than regular, processed foods etc, or GMO foods.
So you have to ask:
what kind of fish oil did they use in these studies, did they use natural or synthetic, processed crap? Were there any other variables like drugs, or disease, you catch the drift. Is there a motive to lie or fake such study?
I really really wouldn't worry about getting cancer from natural fermented cod liver oil, or natural fish oil. I have never heard of it being carcinogenic or any other natural substances that people have been consuming for thousands of years. They use some synthetic chemically altered copy of real product and then say, see told you it's bad for you, now buy our drugs.

Anonymous said...

Vitamin D3 is a natural form of this vitamin that we get from the sun, no one has ever gotten blocked arteries from being in the sun. Must be the type of vitamin D3 or additives in it he's referring to.

Anonymous said...

Are there any brands in Norway, or in the rest of Scandinavia, that produces cod liver oil in this traditional fashion, that Archie describes, that I could buy it from?

I would, of course, want to buy the oil here in Scandinavia, since the shipping-cost is quite pricey.

Thanks for the educating article!

Lisa Jackson said...

You can also get Vital Choice and North American Herb & Spice salmon oils from the companies' websites.

Anonymous said...

Hi all. Good grief! I am a newbie and just received the GAPS book by Dr Campbell yesterday. Was reading about FCLO and she seems to swear by it. As usual, I did a search to see what others were saying about it. Personally, reports on the taste, smell and possible variations in quality itself will keep me away. Also, after reading this post and many comments - i think "forget it". The controversy and extreme polar reactions is just head-spinning. I am just going to stick with a good Vitamin D3 supplement as I actually feel better on it. Appreciate the information. Thanks.

Sarah Smith said...


I think they are based in your part of the world, because the shipping to here in the US is very expensive. They are the same company that is working with Archie on producing a raw, extra virgin cod liver oil (hopefully to be released soon).

Anonymous said...

I swear by it. I lost a lot of hair after my daughter was murdered. It is the only thing that has brought it back.

Linda Lou said...

I am not real clear on your statements about misinfo? Where is the misinfo? It seems you have a pretty interesting finding, that being that cod would not have the histamine, and the company is aware and is testing for you mind clarifying what you meant, pls. Just trying to understand your point. thanks!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for relating your experience on FCOL. My son has digestive problems, so I think we'd better pass on the FCOL. He always had trouble with fish oil. I'm just now trying emulsified fish oil, though I notice that is not in the WAP's Good list. Maybe I could try mixing a recommended fish oil with some lecithin or other emulsifier. I suspect he has trouble digesting lipids, though he may also be sensitive to fish. If it's the latter, I'm not sure what I'll do. Guess I could try krill, but I hate the expense. I love my boy, but his therapies (speech, occupational, etc.) constantly suck money out of our house. Insurance doesn't seem to cover anything these days & I haven't seen where the new system is supposed to fix that either... :-( Anyway, thanks again for the info, and ignore those trolls trying to stir up trouble. Your blog entry & responses are fair and unbiased (in my humble opinion, anyway).

Unknown said...

I think Anonymous July 26 is confused. It's the fermentation that creates the histamine not the cod itself.
Great info Tamara!
One man's food is another man's poison.

Andrea & Jordan Wise said...

My 13 month old son and I have been taking Nordic Naturals Cod Liver Oil (lemon flavored) for 4 months now. Recently my husband and I have been noticing a fishy smell when he sweats. It's really gross!

We switched from disposable diapers to cloth this week and it's even worse. Don't know if it's him sweating in his cloth diapers or his urine.

Has anyone ever heard of this before? It's the only "fishy" thing in his daily diet.

Thanks in advance for your kind and helpful suggestions/advice.

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I found this article. I've been in two minds about giving my 21 month old son cod liver oil for a long time, but decided to finally take the plunge and was going to order the green pastures cod liver oil and butter oil blend as I've heard so many good things about and want it both for immune boosting properties and to strengthen his teeth.

However he has a VERY sensitive digestive system (I think he's definitely a GAPS candidate although it's not really an option for us at the moment to follow that diet) so now I'm very nervous to buy this.
Also the post above saying the fishy smell in the diapers is disturbing as we also use cloth diapers so that would NOT be pleasant!
He struggles a lot with upper respiratory tract infections and a lot of sinus issues and what one person commented about above about a histamine response due to the fermentation process also has me concerned.

I have taken him to a homeopath a few times (finally got us off the antibiotic roller-coaster), but she has never suggested constitutional treatment, she only ever treats acutely and her remedies only seem to work half the time so thus far we have not had all that much luck with homeopathy (though I am a firm believer that it does work, I just think we're not finding the right remedies for him).

Sarah Smith said...

It sounds like it would be great for you to find a homeopath that does constitutional treatment instead of just acute. My family has had amazing results through constitutional treatment, which seeks to correct the long-term issues instead of just dealing with the specific symptoms of the moment. The homeopath we use does not live here, so we consult with him over the phone, but his rates are very reasonable (only $225 per constitutional case from start to finish for all just that one fee).

Anonymous said...

Hi, Andrea. Please call Nordic Naturals number - 800.662.2544 and ask them about this. Perhaps the open bottle was left outside the refrigerator in the heat too long or the dose is too high or something like this. They will be able to help you. Thanks, Shari. I do the company's public relations. Sarah, if you would like to review Nordic Naturals fish oils and other exciting products like Vitamin D, please let me know.

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to ask why it's taken so long to launch the REVCLO, since it was supposed to be launched in March? Plus I wanted to know what is the source of vitamin E added in the REVCLO, is it organic and non-GMO, and is the Rosemary that is added organic? Thanks for your time.

Sarah Smith said...

Sorry, I'm not sure what the hold-up is. Hopefully it will be released soon, and then all will be clear!

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Julia said...

Thanks for this post! I have been taking CLO and FCLO off and on for a few years and was taking Carlson's recently even though I read it's not as good. I just got the Green Pasture Royal Blend gel during a renewed health kick and I took it yesterday - it was really hard for me to even take due to the horrible taste - and after taking it I felt quite funny. This morning I had diarrhea, which is quite odd as nothing I ate yesterday would have caused that normally. I'd like to try the FCLO gel again to see if it's the culprit, but every time I think of it I have a pretty strong gut reaction not to take it. I may try it once more, but I'm also thinking I should trust my body and not bother with the experiment. We'll see!

Anonymous said...

Is the cod oil recommened now available for sale?

Sarah Smith said...

Not yet, but hopefully soon. If I wanted to take some in the meantime, I would try the Sonne's cod liver oil.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sarah,

Thanks for the information. We've been taking the FCLO for quite some time now. However, both myself and my daughter have been concerned about some of the foul odors. It's very inconsistent. One bottle will be fine and the next smells putrid. This conversation and our current concerns with it prompts me to find another source.

On a separate topic would you mind recommending the homeopath that you've had success with?

Thank you,

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much! My daughter saw one a number of years ago and didn't have success. However, I do have faith in homeopathy. My mother used a homeopath for us as children and I did have personal success, so I wouldn't mind trying a different practitioner.
Thanks again,

Anonymous said...

I stumbled upon your site and this has been very interesting. I just recently bought the Blue Ice FCLO. First I will say I hate almost ALL fish. The thought of taking any CLO was repugnant to me. I had to take it as a child and would wretch violently after ingesting it.

Well much to my surprise no issues with the Blue Ice. I have been taking the BLUE ICE Royal Butter Oil/Fermented Cod Liver Oil capsules. Almost NEVER any burping and I am very sensitive to that. Maybe it is the royal butter oil that goes with it in the capsules. I did read a trick on another website to put the capsules in the freezer.

In the weeks I've been taking it I've only had one "fish" burp and it was late at night after I had eaten a spicy meal (don't know if that had any effect) and drank a sparkling water. I normally take a capsule in the morning and even on a sometimes empty stomach I've had no issues. I do have GERD so I don't know if that helps or hurts with this. Is is better now and I rarely take any meds for it now.

I must say I already notice a difference in my body. I was very surprised. I also started using the CLO face cream and my wife commented how much nice and softer my skin is. She never knew I was taking the tabs or using the CLO cream.

I will definitely check back and see if this new option is available. The Blue Ice isn't cheap but so far I've been very happy with their quality and the results speak for themselves. A side benefit has been an improved sex drive. Apparently (previously unknown to me) there is a direct connection between cholesterol and sex drive. I had generally been eating foods that apparently lower cholesterol but not specifically to lower mine.

Anonymous said...

for a fraction of the cost, supplement 10,000iu vit A (retinol), 5,000iu vitD and whatever omega 3 supplement you prefer. your body doesnt care where the retinol and D are coming from. CLO is a convienient way to get A,D and omega 3 but its not needed as an all in one and its vastly more expensive.

1 bottle of 5-10,000iu vitA (VERY inexpensive)
1 bottle of 5,000 vit D (again very inexpensive)
1 bottle of your favorite omega 3 (you decide on expense)
adjust dosages as needed.

shop for gel caps according to your needs (soy free, no veg oil filler etc)

yes you have to go through the living hell of taking seperate vitamins but the "adjustability" , lack of nasty taste and low price cancel out the benefits of FCLO or even other CLO brands imo.

bottom line: you dont need your vitA, vitD and omegas to taste terrible ;)

great article!

jalu said...

hello sarah, nice blog. I'm happy with it, interesting and enlightening

Norse said...

Isn´t it the fermenting that keeps it from going rancid? The bacteria produce different substances which protects the fish fat from peroxidation.

There are also saturated fats and cholesterol in cod liver oil that contributes to the same. And contrary to most other cod liver oils, fermented oil still contain its natural antioxidants.

Sarah Smith said...

Apparently not. If you read the article linked above, it clearly describes how the fermentation process can allow bits of rotten liver to remain. I know that, for me, my body (digestive system) and my senses (smell, taste, and sight) all indicate that fermented cod liver oil is not good for me. I know many others who have no issues with it.

Nashville Kat said...

When is Archie's oil going to be ready? The article said Feb of this year.

Sarah Smith said...

Apparently it is taking much longer than anticipated. All I know is they are still working on getting it ready for market here in the US.

Unknown said...

Attest that my hubby takes fermented cod liver oil and it reversed two abscesses in his teeth. When he stopped, two wks later, those same teeth started hurting and he was taking the unflavored unfermented cod liver oil. Back to Green Pastures unflavored cod liver oil. Light in color and does not taste fishy. After reading the books, Cure for Tooth Decay and Healthy for Life, will only buy unflavored type, flavors are not necessary and just adds to processing. What to keep it simple & as unprocessed as possible. Also my grandmother gave me unflavored cod liver oil 1 tsp. daily from baby until I left home. And grandma knew best.

md said...

So how exactly DO they extract the oil without heat, chemicals, or pressure?

Sarah Smith said...

You can read more about how they make the oil here:

Nicole said...

I have been taking FCLO for over a year now and I have to say that it has helped me tremendously. I suffered from adult acne and was sick of using chemicals on my skin that only irritated my skin instead of fixing the problem. I read about FCLO helping with skin issues on an acne blog and decided to give it a try. I did not have high expectations for this product but within a few weeks my skin immediately started clearing up. I have received numerous compliments from co-workers, friends, and family on how clear my skin looks. I have even noticed that if I become lazy about taking it I will start to break out again. So for me, FCLO has been a miracle vitamin. I have to admit that I have been burping it up lately and I never had that problem before. I take the unflavored capsules. The burping has had me consider changing products. I will have to look into the one you suggested and see if I still get the same benefits for my skin.

Kerimae said...

:( so sorry about your daughter

Anonymous said...

Homeopathy IS in fact, a true healing system. So is Traditional Chinese Medicine. So is Ayurveda. The point is that if something is really harmful and of little or no value, it would not be carried over from generation to generation. Just imagine, there does not need to be any marketing on a healing system that actually works WITH the body. Imagine all the drugs on the market with no marketing (and so much of it!)-Do you think they would even considered by people if they did not have to be force-fed and tout just how wonderful they are as long as you are willing to deal with your body trying to find every possible way to purge them out (i.e side effects). I read books because I want to benefit from the knowledge that someone put together-it took them a long time to put it together and I can read, absorb and use this information in a matter of days. Same goes with healing systems that have been proven to work. People who immediately discount anything that has been carried forward by generations before them, to me, is like someone who cannot stand animals. Maybe FCLO is not for everyone. I always do my due diligence to study things before forming an opinion. If im still open, I try it. Before I recommend to others, I have to see real results in other people. Oh, and for those who keep talking about the "Placebo" effect-if that effect is actually able to cause a positive physical manifestation, I say we should actually focus on harnessing it. Just seeing with my own eyes what many of these "natural" healing systems can do, I now consider the mainstreaM system to be "alternative"-If you land in a hospital with an acute condition, Im all for getting treated ASAP and get the heck out of there to avoid infections. But if you are dealing with warning signs that your body is out of balance, it is every human's god-given right to exploit the power of nature FIRST, no matter how much the paid-off governments around the world do their best to take nutrition away from the people. And "trying something natural" does not mean for a day or week. Your body needs time to absorb and respond and every body will respond differently and in its own time. Whenever I meet someone who is convinced that their 10 pharma pills a day will cure their lifestyle-based dis-ease, I don't walk away from them, I run. I am talking about those who are against educating themselves (yes, there IS a lot of science-based research on non-drug-based natural healing methods). I have found over time that people who are genuinely interested in optimal health will see out and try what actually works. Example, several years ago I had some bad stuff going on with my skin-breaking out in hives, itching-just nasty and painful. At the time, my diet was not good-processed foods, meats, diary...all of it. Everyone I knew told me that I have to go to a dermatologist. My reaction was "I already know that by improving my diet will at least help my skin, why would I want to go to someone with little or no nutritional training for a nutritional problem manifesting itself on my skin?"-Overnight I came up with a plan and eliminated all that cruddy stuff from my diet. Within just a few days, my skin did not itch anymore. Within 3 weeks, all my hives and itching were completely gone. Just this alone was a turning point in my life and I avoid eat anything advertised on TV, no FLU shots-I don't eat perfect, but i am in tune with my body enough to know how to bring it back into balance. We have our own minds for a reason. We have a right to our own opinions-the biggest flaw in mainstream medicine is the deliberate suppression of information on what actually works. What actually works? Its not the drugs, any one thing or product, any one system. Its not one thing people do everyday, its everything working together to create that condition. People must be willing to try different things for a sustained amount of time. People need to make it part of their life'e education to take care of themselves nutritionally. Vital!

Kris said...

Hi Sarah,
I found your site through Fat Tuesday, and love this post. Our three year old takes the chocolate FLCO and begs for more. Our six year old takes it with whipping cream and a chaser of some other sweet food like applesauce. And the ten year old takes the orange liquid. We've been okay, but know several kids who have literally thrown up right after taking it. For sure each person will have their own unique experience. Thanks for sharing yours.

I'm wondering about the constitutional remedies. We have worked a bit with a homeopath who has suggested them for our younger two so far. I just haven't connected with her enough to figure out how/when to use them. How do you approach that? Is it a daily use thing, or just when you notice her feeling "off"? I'd love to hear more!

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Kris,
Welcome to my blog!

As for constitutional treatment: it really needs to be overseen by an experienced classical homeopath. Sometimes, the body's vital force has enough energy to balance everything at once: physical, emotional, and mental symptoms all get better when the remedy is taken. However, in my experience, this is somewhat rare.

For the majority of people, the vital force can only work on part of the symptoms at a time, and while that happens, sometimes certain symptoms (especially the physical symptoms) can actually get worse at first while the body is healing the deeper levels (the mental and emotional levels). In these cases, an experienced homeopath needs to assess what is happening to ensure that the remedy is working appropriately and following the proper direction of cure (which is healing from the inside to outwards, from the top down, and generally in the reverse order of the appearance of the symptoms). So if you were to give your children the constitutional remedies recommended to you, you may not know enough to know how to assess whether or not the remedies are actually doing what they should.

For instance, if you focuses specifically on an external symptom such as eczema, you might find that some remedies will make the eczema better but at the same time other problems are getting worse, such as digestive or sleep issues. In that case, the remedy would not be working properly in the direction of cure, since sleep issues and stomach issues are more important to the body as a whole.

I hope this helps, and please let me know if you have any more questions.

Julie said...

Thanks for this review. We use Nordic Naturals' Omega 3 supplements as recommended by our homoepath. We've found that they work just as well as FCLO and they are unfermented.

Unknown said...

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Anonymous said...

This may be completely out there, but I wonder if the ability to digest the FCLO without issue may be related to the ability to digest meat (particularly red meat) without issue. I've been taking the plain Blue Ice FCLO for a little while now and have absolutely no complaints. When I visited my parents recently, my mom expressed that she couldn't eat as "heavy" as I can, with lots of natural fats in my stews and otherwise. She gravitates toward vegetarianism and raw diets and I, while still eating much organic produce (often cooked), fare better with considerably more meat and animal products in my diet. It makes me wonder if certain people just naturally can tolerate certain foods better than others because of a general body make-up.

Sarah Smith said...

I'm not sure, but I do eat lots of red meat and fats in general (especially butter and coconut oil). So at least for me, that doesn't seem to be the problem.

Anonymous said...

this article seems like ur really pushing this new company, while trying to say that the other one just doesnt do it right anymore... plus this new one still hasnt released this product. just makes me wonder what ur affiliation is with them? cant claim rancid body parts if u dont have proof of this, is there any research into this or studies that show which oil is better? just sayin, i like to have my research rather than simple hearsay

Sarah Smith said...

I have no affiliation with the new company. If you read the article I linked to, you will understand more about the rotten parts in the oil.

Mark said...

I am so glad to have read your blog and the feedback has been very helpful. I have been taking FCLO from Green Pasture for a long time and my favorite was the cinnamon flavor. Unfortunately, my recent order of FCLO - arctic mint flavor was unpleasant due to the burning sensation of my throat, strong order and I would drink a glass of almond milk. I do remember that I didn't have these reactions but now it makes sense and have decided to stop FLCO for now. Thank you.

amanda said...

I've been waiting here since you posted this. Any news?! I'm really excited to try this. Thanks! :)

Sarah Smith said...

I still haven't heard anything further about the new cod liver oil. I went ahead and bought another type that was recommended to me by several of my blog followers (and it is also listed as "good" by the WAPF). It is Sonne's old fashioned cod liver oil. I bought it from Amazon. It has a very mild, unoffensive taste, just like I remember from the old Blue Ice (from before they started selling fermented cod liver oil). I don't take the Sonne's very regularly. (I am still amazed at how much better our immune systems have gotten since we started constitutional homeopathy; we just don't seem to get sick any more!!) But I wanted to have some on-hand in case of any illness and to take occasionally, especially when I'm not having as much time to cook as usual with working so much trying to get the new house ready to move into.

So I'm not pushing the cod liver oil on anyone, BUT: both of my kids actually ask to have some! My 3-year-old goes to the fridge and gets it out several times a week and asks for some. That is how I remember my daughter being with the old Blue Ice cod liver oil too, when she was younger. They do both get to have a "bear pill" (Mercola children's vitamin) anytime they take CLO, as I told them the bear needs some fish to eat in their tummies. My daughter likes the bear pill enough that she asks for some of the CLO whenever she sees her brother get it out. But I think my son just really likes the CLO itself, as he always says "mmm, yummy!" after he takes his. (And with the fermented CLO, no amount of bribing ever really worked well.)

Element Kennels said...

Swanson Vitamins makes a double strength cod liver oil that uses vitamin A and D from fish liver. I contacted them and they confirmed that the A and D that they put back into the cod liver oil is from cod livers. It is emulsified so it may not be as good as cold processed but hey, it's better than nothing at all or consuming synthetics. They are also very reasonably priced:

Element Kennels said...

Sorry not emulsified, that would be their liquid cod liver supplement, (the liquid emulsified cod liver oil contains synthetics), the gel capsules are molecularly distilled and contain natural vitamin A and D.

wefi said...

I'm from Norway and grew up on cod liver oil as a child - my grandmother would put it in fresh cream for me (we had our own cows) In this day and age, my great concern is all the mercury that is in fish, and that it might be transferred into cod liver oil.

Anonymous said...

I feel so conflicted about taking FCLO...I am trying to heal my teeth and gums and read that the FCLO and high vitamin butter oil is supposed to be extremely helpful but the different perspectives for and against it make me so uncertain and I can't make up my mind. I don't know if FCLO has the same dangers of posing a higher risk of prostate cancer for men (I'm female but if I had a husband in the future) or not...Dr. Brian Clement is strongly against cod liver oil but I don't know if that extends to the fermented kind as well...

If anyone reading this has had great results with their teeth and gums with FCLO, please chime in !

Ayinde said...

Sarah, I love your blog. it's really inspiring for a mother-to-be. I noticed you said in an earlier post that you started taking cod liver oil in 2006 and got pregnant in 2007. Do you think that cod liver oil helps with fertility?

Anonymous said...

I take the cinnamon tingle. I can't even detect a fishy taste. I put a little in my mouth with a small spoon and then take a gulp of water and swallow it like a pill. Then I take my other supplements. I take the one that is combined with the butter oil. Maybe that makes it less fishy as well.

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Ayinde,
I think that the WAPF-inspired diet in general helps with fertility. Lots of butter, grassfed beef, eggs, raw milk, etc. All of my friends who follow the WAPF-type diet (and myself) have had no problems getting pregnant (it has actually been much easier than we all expected). And we did all take cod liver oil as well, so that could definitely be part of it.

One thing I did that I think really helped was to follow the WAPF guidelines for pregnancy and breastfeeding BEFORE trying to get pregnant. Both the mother and father should try to follow these guidelines as much as possible, and that makes both parents healthy and ready for conception. My husband and I both tried to follow these guidelines for about 3-6 months before each pregnancy.

Sarah Smith said...

Here are the recommendations (from this site:

Cod Liver Oil to supply 20,000 IU vitamin A and 2000 IU vitamin D per day

1 quart (or 32 ounces) whole milk daily, preferably raw and from pasture-fed cows (learn more about raw milk on our website, A Campaign for Real Milk,

4 tablespoons butter daily, preferably from pasture-fed cows

2 or more eggs daily, preferably from pastured chickens

Additional egg yolks daily, added to smoothies, salad dressings, scrambled eggs, etc.

3-4 ounces fresh liver, once or twice per week (If you have been told to avoid liver for fear of getting "too much Vitamin A," be sure to read Vitamin A Saga)

Fresh seafood, 2-4 times per week, particularly wild salmon, shellfish and fish eggs

Fresh beef or lamb daily, always consumed with the fat

Oily fish or lard daily, for vitamin D

2 tablespoons coconut oil daily, used in cooking or smoothies, etc.

Lacto-fermented condiments and beverages

Bone broths used in soups, stews and sauces

Soaked whole grains

Fresh vegetables and fruits


Trans fatty acids (e.g., hydrogenated oils)
Junk foods
Commercial fried foods
White flour
Soft drinks
Drugs (even prescription drugs)

IMPORTANT WARNING: Cod liver oil contains substantial levels of omega-3 EPA, which can cause numerous health problems, such as hemorrhaging during the birth process, if not balanced by arachidonic acid (ARA), an omega-6 fatty acid found in liver, egg yolks and meat fats. Please do not add cod liver oil to a diet that is deficient in these important animal foods. It is important to follow our diet for pregnant mothers in its entirety, not just selected parts of it.

Unknown said...

Had customer ask about this post... the topic was addressed long ago, i'm so sorry for the confusion the blog post here has stirred for a few people. most understand the intent and see through it...the person asking thought i should post something i will post the answer to his question....

no, it is oil... but one has to laugh at this :)

1. the term rotting. some people call fermenting rotting but only if they want to conger up images as such. in our community we discuss fermenting similar to digestion and we think good, positive attributes..we understand. yogurt is really rotting milk...:) but people who like yogurt will call it fermented milk or pre-digested milk.

2. the fermented livers that are left in the vat are healthful. in other cultures and other time periods the protein and water sections (livers with oil removed) of the breakdown (ferment) would be used for human food. liquamin, garum, fish sauce etc..... i have tried the livers and i know they are very healthful but i'm not ready to package and sell. they are loaded in such things as biotin, niacin, choline etc...

3. we currently use the water products as fertilizer for the soil/plants.. it is wonderful, life giving product. i have blogs and pictures of this on the sight. The protein section we make into cattle lick tubs. the cows, goats etc.. really like them and they are very healthful for the animals as it would be for us if these were provided for us. you can find blog postings on the lick tubs on our sight.

..back up.. defining terms. when you ferment fish and/or fish livers the ferment brings forth a brine and separates the lipids from the solids. the lipids are oil and water, the solids are the protein phase.

anyway... if we did put the protein back into the oil it would be healthful but this is not what we do. the oil is decanted, filtered and centrifuged. it is oil. and fully tested... Oil does not grow bacteria and it is redundantly tested for this by FDA laws three time for each small batch... and we do not have our own lab so the testing is very expensive.

what else... histamine, no.. no histamine. histamine is found in red fish like tuna. if you eat tuna then more than likely you will consume some histamine. we actually test this amine...

never seen mercury in any cod liver oil...even other brands. found out later that cod is not accumulator of metals. what might change over time is farmed fish. cod is now farmed and i know farmed fish will accumulate metals from the concentrated feed source.... our cod is wild..i know some clo out of norway would use farmed livers as this industry grows

Anonymous said... sells a wonderful, old world, cold-processed cod liver oil by Sonne's.

I personally have never felt good about the fermented cod liver oil, for many reasons and in many ways, so I am thankful and relieved to see this blog post out there. Secondly, when Weston A. Price was studying the benefits of cod liver oil on indigenous peoples and others, there was no "fermented cod liver oil"! Some things are very beneficial fermented, and some things are not. You'll need to trust your own body and instincts on this one, instead of allowing your own inner voice of reason and judgement to be "bulldozed" by any information given from "outside"--be it the voice of the WAPF community, individuals following the herd mentality, business owners, etc.

Anonymous said...

I take the Green Pasture Blue Ice butter oil/fermented cod liver oil and it is the ONLY fish oil that I have taken that does NOT make me nauseous or burp up the fish flavor. I take the non gelatin capsules, two a day, and so does my 5 year old son. We are trying to naturally stop or cure the three cavities he has. I have tried Norwegian Salmon oil and another liquid Oil recommended by my chiropractor made from sardines, cod, and other fishes. They both made me nauseous and have indigestion.

Loraine said...


Please let us know the results. I am interesting in healing my daughter's cavity and heard the Fermented cod liver oil was instrumental.

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JillyBean said...

So, where is the new product? I put my name on a waiting list but I got the impression from this post that it was going to be available by now. I NEED to find a way to get some type of CLO in my toddler for brain food/healing purposes and he won't touch the flavored Nordic Naturals (strawberry). Any suggestions?

JillyBean said...

Also, my son has to be dairy free so we can't try the butter/oil blend from Green Pasture's, which seems to have the better flavors. I really need help.

Sarah Smith said...

Hi JillyBean,
I also thought the new CLO would be available by now. I went ahead and bought another type that was recommended to me by several of my blog followers (and it is also listed as "good" by the WAPF). It is Sonne's old fashioned cod liver oil. I bought it from Amazon. It has a very mild, unoffensive taste, just like I remember from the old Blue Ice (from before they started selling fermented cod liver oil). I don't take the Sonne's very regularly. (I am still amazed at how much better our immune systems have gotten since we started constitutional homeopathy; we just don't seem to get sick any more!!) But I wanted to have some on-hand in case of any illness and to take occasionally, especially when I'm not having as much time to cook as usual with working so much on moving into the new house.

So I'm not pushing the cod liver oil on anyone, BUT: both of my kids actually ask to have some! My 3-year-old goes to the fridge and gets it out several times a week and asks for some. That is how I remember my daughter being with the old Blue Ice cod liver oil too, when she was younger. They do both get to have a "bear pill" (Mercola children's vitamin) anytime they take CLO, as I told them the bear needs some fish to eat in their tummies. My daughter likes the bear pill enough that she asks for some of the CLO whenever she sees her brother get it out. But I think my son just really likes the CLO itself, as he always says "mmm, yummy!" after he takes his. (And with the fermented CLO, no amount of bribing ever really worked well.)

Anonymous said...

My first day of taking FCLO was on Jan 10, I was the one who wrote about feeling conflicted about whether to take FCLO or not. I took two capsules a day, along with two teaspoons of High Vitamin Butter Oil. Until a few days ago, I kept this up, but I noticed not long after beginning this regimen, I started to feel high anxiety. Now, I am a naturally anxious person but I could tell that this was different than before I started with the fish oil.
I stopped the FCLO three days ago, and am continuing though with the high vitamin butter oil and I can say with confidence that my anxiety has subdued and I expect that it will continue to go back to "normal" once the last traces of the oil is out of my system. However, I am going to try taking it again in another week, to see if it really was the fish oil causing my heightend anxiety. I really wish it wasn't/wouldn't be because I desperately want to improve my teeth, surrounding bones, and gums, which are receding badly.
So once I start taking it again and if it doesn't increase my anxiety the way it did, then I can chalk it up to coincidence, which is what I'm hoping because I really need and want to improve my dental health.

Marina said...

Cinnamon is usually known to cause digestive problems, if used on a regular basis. So the cinnamon itself might be one of the reasons for such a reaction. Especially if consumed on a regular basis for a prolonged period of time.

"The distinctive odor and flavor of cinnamon is due to cinnamaldehyde, the major oily constituent of cinnamon bark. Since this can be toxic in large doses, a regular use of substantial amounts of ground cinnamon may be unsafe. "
Quote from:

Indeed what Sarah mentioned in her blog, that the taste differs from bottle to bottle, is true, they even mention it on their page. Since the process is not industrially controlled, the product itself cannot be equal at each time. As for the grading in color and odor/taste, i believe it varies not only on the batch of fish, but as well on the time it is fermented. From what I know the color of the oil gets darker the longer it is fermented, as well as thicker and with more odor/taste. Maybe Green Pasture could be advised to change that part a bit? And make two different oils: one less and one more fermented....?

Plus, one more advice from my side. No matter what you take as food or food supplement, do not stick with it on regular daily base for a long period of time. Rather make a period of consuming and a period of rest. Originally Mother Nature didn't give us all the ingredients served at any time ;). Instead we have vegetables/fruits/spices that originally grow only on a specific season, long before us they used to hunt for food as well so meat was also every now and then, ...etc. I don't think we should forget that only because now we have greenhouses, farms and plenty of food available everyday from different parts of the world.

In example to this post, Cod Liver Oil was originally produced only after the fishing season (January till Early April) making the oil available from late April till the end of May. If we presume they consumed that oil on a daily basis, it was consumed in a couple of months, leaving you with a "waiting" season till you could have a new batch.

We just started our consumption, and I'm a rather tricky belly owner ;) We ordered the mint, cinnamon and non flavoured bottles. And once we finish it we'll pause before a new period. For now we started with the cinnamon, it's a bit tingy in the throat but i have no other problems. We take ours about half an hour after a meal (heard it's better to take it around meals than on an empty stomach).

My 2 cents :)

Marina said...

A question to all of you, isn't 5mL an adult dosage?
I believe the dosage for kids from 1 till 12 yrs old is 2,5 mL.

Marina said...

Another pro to animal liver oil is the vitamin A, which in vegetables is found as beta-carotene (which will later on be dissembled in vitamin A into our body). The difference is that you can absorb and transform only a veeery small amount of vitamin A from beta-carotene, so it is much easier and better to consume it through animal origin. And it is mainly found in livers and intestines.

Dunno in your country, but in mine till recently animal intestines and livers were part of a regular diet (when people still had pigs and cows on their own ground). With the modernization of the culture, it is being slowly lost (I myself never ate intestines, and never liked liver when I was served with it as a kid). So we are loosing this part of the food chain.

Thus the pros in the animal based liver oil.

we consume both animal and vegetable oil on the side (flax, primrose and hemp for Omega 3 fats, and Olive, Pumpkin seeds and Sesame Oil for cooking and dressing). Just make sure they are cold pressed.

Marina said...

Unfortunately not necessarily :/ It depends on the producers values and principles.
Competition and succeeding price reduction, often have as a result lower quality of ingredients and/or lower quality of the product. I've seen it countless times in this small country of mine (which only recently started getting bigger and more worldwide open). But that is a whole topic of it's own.

Of course, the same applies to monopoly, again it's a fundamental point of principles and values. :)

Anonymous said...

Too much of a good thing can cause problems. Fermented foods, although highly beneficial nutrition wise, contain strains of bacteria that if taken too often can start causing problems. Consuming fermented cod liver oil, potentially coupled or tripled with other fermented foods/beverages (sour kraut, kombucha, kefir...), every day is probably over doing it (depending on whether or not you kill off the internal flora [including external flora] that makes up more of us than we do [humans are more bacteria than human] with things like chlorine/chloramine within bath/shower water, or whatever else may kill it, frequently). Be wise with your use; don't over do it.

Anonymous said...

Please read Dr Brownsteins March 2014 issue about fish oil pills I'm confused about fish oils now but I understand that the ratio of omega 3-6 is important and iodine is a must

Anonymous said...

I just recently purchased the Blue Ice FCLO/Butter blend (cinnamon), and have taken it for three days in a row. The stuff I received is not rancid smelling or tasting (it doesn't taste like fish at all). The first serving I had I took on a fairly empty stomach and felt a little uneasiness in my belly, but felt no nausea or any other symptoms you complained of. My daughter started coughing and developing other symptoms of a cold the day before I received the oil. I gave her a child sized serving (she's four), the morning I received the oil and she didn't cough at all for the rest of the day and the day after. Today she coughed a little once but I'm not sure if just was a non-cold/flu-related irritation, or a cold/flu cough. We'll wait and see, but so far it's doing us well. (I was developing a little cough myself and, after the first day of taking the oil [just like my daughter], it's now gone.)

Anonymous said...

It's scientifically proven that we need iodine, and the ratio of omega 3's to 6's IS important. Read this:

Anonymous said...

*Sorry, ISN'T important (according to this article at least):

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