Choosing the Right Fats
by Udo Erasmus 
Udo Erasmus (Biography)
|For almost two decades Udo Erasmus has dedicated his time to understanding the effects of fats and oils on human health, as well as the nature of health itself.|
Most of his more recent days have been spent on the road, spreading the message about this largely misunderstood, but vitally important, subject. He has written two ground breaking books: Fats and Oils, and Fats That Heal Fats That Kill, and has recently completed his third, Fats That Heal Fats That Kill: The Kitchen Guide, co-written with Usha Menard.
Having survived the first world war, the horrendous Bolshevik revolution, and the depression that followed, Gerhard and Senta Erasmus left their Latvian homeland when communists advanced towards the Baltic countries.
Udo was born during the second world war in Poland, the first stop on his parent's exodus. With mostly German and Swedish background, they left for Germany with four small children (one child yet unborn).
When Udo was ten years old, the Erasmus clan left a weary Europe. As refugees without means or connections, but with renewed hope, they started life over in Canada, a more peaceful land with greater opportunity.
Part of Udo's childhood was spent on 112 acres of bushland in Northern Canada, without electricity, television, telephone, or radio. It was here he learned about the wonders of the biological world and developed a passion for the delicate complexities of Mother Nature. As a child, he remembers being fascinated by small spiders negotiating leaves of grass, exploring abandoned mines with other children, and picking wild strawberries and herbs. Udo and his siblings helped to tend a large organic family garden, in which they each had their own plot to grow personal vegetable favorites: radishes, carrots, peas, and more. For several years, he built a collection of skulls taken from dead animals found in nearby woods and meadows, and on riverbanks.
During his first three years in university, Udo worked in a mining exploration company. He was flown into remote mountain locations in northern British Columbia by plane; food was air-dropped in. He took soil samples for mineralization tests and was issued a rifle for self-defense against non-vegetarian carnivores!
In school, his favorite courses were the Sciences, where he learned how things work, and English, where he especially enjoyed literature and poetry. Specific interests included biology, environmental studies, natural history, health and human nature. When it came time to pursue an education, he chose Life Sciences, and maintained interests in English as a hobby; interests which would later turn into a lifelong career. Udo Erasmus received his B.Sc. degree in Honours Zoology with a major in Psychology, followed by graduate studies in Biochemistry and Genetics at the University of British Columbia. While he studied Genetics at UBC, one of his research papers was published in the peer reviewed journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, in 1967, and two more of his papers were published in the peer reviewed journal Mutation Research, in 1971.
A Major Turning Point
In 1980, life for Udo took a significant turn when he was poisoned while carelessly working with pesticides. When medicine was unable to provide help, he concluded that health was his own responsibility and sought the answers he needed by burying himself in research literature on nutrition and health. He gave special attention to the least understood arena: the effects of fats and oils on human health. This meant finding and perusing thousands of original research studies, many which were inaccessible to the public and were therefore unknown. Several years of collecting and reviewing this data culminated in his landmark Canadian best-seller Fats and Oils. This book also became his thesis and earned him a Ph.D. in nutrition in 1986. The book is now available in expanded, revised, updated form as Fats That Heal Fats That Kill.
In 1988, he received his MA in Counseling Psychology from the Alfred Adler Institute of Chicago (now called the Adler School of Professional Psychology).
More than 15 years of exploring the practical aspects of fats has earned Udo Erasmus authoritative status in the field, as well as the nicknames "The Fatman" and "His Royal Oiliness".
He pioneered technology for pressing and packaging fresh oils under exclusion of light, heat, and oxygen - three main factors which can transform nutritious oils into toxic ones. Until that time, oils were highly processed by destructive methods, sacrificing health benefits in order to attain long shelf life. Originally, he worked with flax oil, and later added sunflower, sesame, and other oils to address the main shortcoming of flax oil - its high omega 3 and poor omega 6 fatty acid content, which can result in omega 6 deficiency.
Presently, Udo develops nutritional formulas to improve both human and animal well being. In addition to essential fats, he works with phytonutrient-rich greens (the primary healing food on planet Earth), digestive enzymes, fiber-rich whole foods, friendly bowel micro-organisms, herbs, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. He also innovates manufacturing methods for maintaining nutrient quality, and runs a consulting practice for manufacturing companies in Europe and North America.