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Fermented Cod Liver Oil

The following Short History is an excerpt from “Cod Liver Oil, Our Number One Superfood” published by The Weston A. Price Foundation.

A Short History

“Cultures ranging from the South Seas, the Eskimos, the Scandinavians and the ancient Romans valued fish liver oils for their health-giving properties. Hippocrates first recorded the medicinal use of fish oils, and the first century naturalist, Pliny the Elder, recorded the use of dolphin liver oil as a remedy for chronic skin eruptions.l In 1848, the British physician John Hughes Bennett observed that cod liver oil had been used from time immemorial by the northern fishing populations for its general medicinal and strengthening properties. For centuries before producing the oil itself, the British used the blackish residue left behind by barreled cod livers as a balm. In 1766, the Manchester Infirmary began prescribing ingestion of cod liver oil for rheumatism after a patient cured herself of the disease on two occasions by ingesting her topical treatment. The infirmary thereafter used 50-60 gallons of cod liver oil per year, and after comparing its use to that of a placebo in a number of individual patients, the physician Percival added it the the British pharmacopoeia in 1771.

“Physicians used cod liver oil to treat the vitamin D deficiency disease rickets at least as far back as 1799, and by the 1820s use of cod liver oil for this purpose was widespread in Germany, Holland, and the Netherlands. During the same century, its use expanded to include the treatment of eye diseases and tuberculosis. Research between 1920 and 1940 further expanded the use of cod liver oil to prevent or treat measles, industrial absenteeism, and puerperal fever, a fatal infection occurring in women just after giving birth. The advent of sulfa antibiotics and later penicillin mostly eliminated medical interest in cod liver oil as an anti-infective agent, but a number of trials conducted before 1940 provided solid evidence of its efficacy. In clinical trials, cod liver oil reduced measles mortality by more than one-half and reduced industrial absenteeism by up to two-thirds.

“Today the medical establishment frowns upon cod liver oil, but many health conscious consumers are rediscovering its health-building properties.”

Cod liver oil is a great source of Vitamins A, D, K2, and E, as well has DHA. Fermentation is the traditional way of extractionl which increases the nutrient value of the cod liver oil.

Dr. Weston Price found that by giving his patients cod liver oil with high-vitamin butter oil he was able to control dental cavities and in many cases open cavities with exposed dentin took on a hard glassy finish.

Fermented Cod Liver Oil

Green Pasture Products is a family owned business started by Dave and Barb Wetzel in 2000. Their business focus is to provide high-quality sacred-food oils just as they were made prior to the industrialized food and farming revolution.

High-Vitamin Butter Oil is their foundation product that all their work has blossomed through. Dr. Weston Price discovered High-Vitamin Butter Oil back in the 1930’s but the pinnacle of his discovery was when he combined Cod Liver Oil with High-Vitamin Butter Oil.

Today they produce the High-Vitamin Butter Oil, and they ferment the historically sacred cod and skate liver oils.

Fermenting the livers of fish to extract the oil is an old world practice that may go back as far as biblical times. During the 1850s was the beginning of the industrial food revolution and the first time cod liver oil manufacturing changed from its historical sacred roots to an industrialized food.

They’ve turned back the clock and restored these sacred foods to their roots. They are proud to offer these historical sacred foods prepared with the same great care and concern for our generational health just as our ancestors.

Dr. Price traveled the world studying the traditional diets of many cultures. In every culture he discovered sacred foods that were carefully collected and prepared to ensure the strong mind, body, and spirit of its people.

Following are two testimonials of the benefit of using Fermented Cod Liver Oil and High Vitamin Butter Oil.


“I became health conscious when I was 15 years old, and to me, at that time, that translated into becoming vegetarian and exercising regularly.  By nineteen, I had become a naturalist and gave up all refined sugars and flours, avoiding additives, preservatives and other chemicals like the plague.  I was very much into herbs and natural healing.  I married at 21 and went on to have a bunch of babies quickly.  Up until my fourth pregnancy, I had never had a dental cary that needed filling in my life.   I had been able to get by with sealants only.  Then, after my fourth child was born, I had a wisdom tooth rot out of my mouth that had to be pulled.   I was sick about it.  I couldn’t figure out what was happening to my teeth!  But that was only the beginning…

“After my 5th pregnancy, my teeth were in really bad shape.  I was so low on minerals that my body did not have enough reserves to grow another baby and feed my teeth.  So another trip to the dentist revealed rampant decay with two molars that were rotted to the roots and needed root canals, two that were nearly there, and about eight other cavities.  🙁 many tears…

“I went home reeling- and determined to do whatever I could to save my teeth!  Thankfully I pulled out my new copy of Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Dr. Weston Price and read for the first time Chapter 16 where it discusses Primitive Control of Dental Caries, and how he used 1/2 teaspoon cod liver oil along with 1/2 teaspoon high vitamin butter oil three times per day to stop and reverse tooth decay.  My husband ordered me a six month supply of both and I got busy taking my oils.

“I started taking:

1/2 teaspoon Green Pastures High Vitamin Butter Oil three times per day along with

1/2 teaspoon Green Pastures Cod Liver Oil three times per day (of course, they now only produce fermented, and you need less per serving- about 1/3 teaspoon three times per day)

“I did use Dr. Christopher’s Tooth and Gum powder in place of toothpaste some of that time.  I used essential oils of clove and cinnamon to help with the sensitivity at the beginning before the CLO and HVBO had enough time to do their magic.  It didn’t take long though.

“Only a couple of weeks and I felt a difference.  It was amazing to me that I could have such horrible holes in my teeth and not have any pain or sensitivity after a couple of months.  Two years later I decided to return to the dentist.  I began to get the promptings of our next baby that wanted to come to our family and I was concerned about dental work and pregnancy.  I was also curious to see if any healing had actually occurred.

“The four teeth that needed root canals were completely healed with secondary dentin.  The other eight were in varying stages of healing.  They were no longer decaying and were filling in with dentin.  The dentist commented that, to his surprise, the structural integrity of my teeth was strong.  What was left were a few teeth with dark spots.  Three years later I went back to the doctor again. There was one dark spot and after going back and forth between my teeth, my chart, and the x-ray, he told me that I was supposed to have a cavity there but that I didn’t.  After further examination he told me that it was a cavity that had gone clear to the root but that had healed completely to the enamel.

“During this time, I did not take any other supplements at all on any regular basis.  Of course, I was careful about my diet and only consumed high quality dairy products – but nothing that you couldn’t find around here (Brown Cow yogurt – now I make my own, Daisy Sour Cream, raw milk from a local farmer – now we drink our own, and only regular butter from Costco- even though I would like to only purchase organic, it’s too expensive for our budget, and we have had healing in spite of it.)  I think a big thing for me was soaking my grains and beans because it allowed me to keep and use the minerals in my food instead of having them be bound with the phytic acid and having them leave my body unused.  However, I had made that change before adding the cod liver oil and I didn’t experience the healing in my teeth until I added the CLO and HVBO into my diet.

“Then we had to deal with my oldest sons and their poor teeth!  They were vegetarians in utero and through their early years of life.  My oldest son’s teeth are horrible, so soft and prone to decay. This is a child who had never had a meal from a fast food restaurant!   Can I tell you how important those animal fats and proteins are?!! He had a number of teeth pulled, and was scheduled for a pulpotomy or two, as up until that time, we hadn’t given the kids the CLO and HVBO (too expensive, said my husband).  Try dental bills in comparison!  So we bought some for the kids and got them taking it.  Six weeks later, we took him in and he did not need the pulpotomy!  His secondary dentin had grown back, protecting the nerve once again.  Yea!  Another success.

“So, what I believe now, based on my experience is this:

“CLO and HVBO added to a diet that is rich in nutrients and minimal in healthy sweets will reverse tooth decay.  I recommend WAPF’s diet guidelines, keeping the Word of Wisdom in the forefront and using the Spirit as your guide.  We have not been perfect, but tried to do our best, and we have experienced healing many times over.” ~ Caralee Ayre, Clearfield, Utah



“My 8 year old daughter has been plagued her entire life by consistent tooth decay.  By 8 years old she has had 19 fillings, 6 root canals with silver caps and 5 extractions.  In May 2011, we went for her 3 month cleaning (we took her every 3 months).  Big surprise, 3 more cavities.  Only this time, something in me said no to fillings.  She’d had enough.I went home and called my sister upset over the news.  She said to me, you have to read this book.  She ordered it for me off of Amazon that day.  When it arrived I read it cover to cover, taking notes along the way.  Then I did it.  I changed everything.  I threw out our toothpaste for fluoride free.  I started buying raw milk from a local farm.  I started buying only grass fed meats, cheese and eggs.  I have her the cod liver oil every day…I cut back on phytic acid rich foods like whole grains.  I KNOW what you’re thinking…but if you only knew what those whole grains are doing.  I began sprouting and fermenting my grains and legumes.  Then in September, I went back.  By now I was ready for the dentist to say to me…see I told you so.  Only she didn’t.  She paused.  She looked at the xrays 3x and then looked at her teeth and then finally, at me. She sat up and said ‘I don’t understand…her cavities have hardened over…this is impossible.’  I began shaking…I really did.  I was instantly as high as a kite.  We discussed the new diet for 15 minutes as she took notes and then she said something she never thought she would say, ‘I don’t see a need to fill these cavities at this time.’  The BIG bonus?  I’ve lost 20 pounds while eating a ton of healthy, raw fats!  Who knew just switching from corn fed meat and dairy to grass fed would make such a difference on my waist!  But it was never about me…it was about saving my daughters smile.  Thank you to the moon and back for this book.”  ~ Lalena Jarvis

From Cod Liver Oil Basics and Recommendations:

“The Fermented Cod Liver Oil is sold as a food so does not contain vitamin levels on the label.  However, after numerous tests, the approximate values of A and D have been ascertained at 1900 IU vitamin A per mL and 390 IU vitamin D per mL.  This 1 teaspoon of FCLO/HVBO contains 9500 IU vitamin A and 1950 IU vitamin D, a ration of about 5:1.

“Based on these values, the dosage for fermented cod liver oil is provided as follows:

  • Children age 3 months to 12 years:  1/2 teaspoon or 2.5 mL, providing 4650 IU vitamin A and 975 IU vitamin D.
  • Children over 12 years and adults:  1 teaspoon or 10 capsules, providing 9500 IU vitamin A and 1950 IU vitamin D.
  • Pregnant and nursing women:  2 teaspoons or 20 capsules, providing 19,000 IU vitamin A and 3900 IU vitamin D.

“Please note that the fermented cod liver oil contains many co-factors that may enhance the body’s uptake and usage of vitamins A and D; in fact, many have reported results equivalent to those obtained from high-vitamin fermented cod liver oil with half the recommended dose, that is 1/4 teaspoon or 1.25 mL for children age 3 months to 12 years; 1/2 teaspoon or 5 capsules for children over 12 years and adults; and 1 teaspoon or 10 capsules for pregnant and nursing women.”

Related Article of Interest:

Family says fish oil helped son recover from traumatic brain injury


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