Fermented Cod Liver Oil
What is Fermented Cod Liver Oil?
Earlier, the cod livers were fermented for a year or so, inside a bucket filled with seawater before actually extracting the oil from the cod livers. The liver oil manufactured by the application of this process is known as fermented cod liver oil and in recent times, fermented cod liver oil has once again been revived. The revival of the traditional process is largely due to the fact that it is widely believed to be extra potent in creating a more nutritious supplement than the modern day method of extraction; which involves cooking the entire fish. Green Pasture’s cod liver oil is popular among the brands that manufacture and sell fermented cod liver oil of good quality; one can check out fermented blue ice cod liver oil as one of their best selling product line.
How is Fermented Cod Liver Oil Better than Regular Cod Liver Oil?
Apart from the benefits associated with cod liver oil in general, fermented cod liver oil has certain healthy aspects to it that are unique due to the process in which it is made. Nowadays, the manufacturing of cod liver oil is achieved via heat treatment and that messes up the vitamin balance within the oil. As the heat damages the ratio of the vitamins (vitamin A and D mainly), the nutritional value of the oil is reduced. In order to raise the oil’s nutritional value, the vitamins are sometimes also added artificially after the heat treatment. However, this imbalanced and artificial method also increases the chances of vitamin A overdose, when the food supplement is taken in large amounts and over a significant period of time.
Now, as the lacto-fermentation process does not involve heat treatment at all and is extracted after it has been adequately preserved for an appropriate extent of time, the natural balance of the vitamins A, D and the omega-3 fats remain undisturbed. Although determining the exact difference between the two types of cod liver oil would require laboratory work, one can easily see the difference between the two as the fermented version will look richer with a greater concentration of the yellow color (due to omega 3 fats and vitamins), when compared to regular cod liver oil. Another advantage that fermented cod liver oil has over the heat-treated version is that the nutrients in it are easier to digest and assimilate for our body because it is a fermented product.
Why is Fermented Cod Liver Oil Not More Common?
The reason is simply the fact that it is a long process, which requires more patience and time than the modern process of heating. One must also take into account the reality that it takes months (six or seven at least) or even a year to ferment the codfish livers properly, which can be counter-productive in terms of business. This of course, limits the production and supply rates as well. Compare that to the heat treatment process that allows for mass production on a daily basis and the reason should become quite clear. When the heat treatment process was first introduced in the 1850s, people did not realize the negative effects of the heat but only saw the gain that was to be had from the new process. Now that the facts have been established with the help of modern science, the fermentation process has once again gained attention.