Udo Erasmus, Ph.D. - Biography

Udo Erasmus was born in Poland during the second world war to parents from Latvia and Estonia escaping from communists. His family fled to West Germany at the end of the war, and emigrated to Canada when he was 10 years old.

His parents, having endured the first world war and the bolshevik revolution during their childhood, and having lived through the depression during adulthood only to be caught in the middle of the second world war, moved to northern Canada where Udo and his four siblings grew up on 112 acres of bush land. Without television, telephone, or radio, nature was both his teacher and entertainer.

At 16, Udo began university studies in the sciences -- math, physics, chemistry, and biology. Eventually, he settled on zoology and psychology as his field of study, and specialized in genetics (under Canadian geneticist, educator, and environmentalist Dr. David Suzuki) and biochemistry. His papers in genetics were published in the peer review journal "Mutation Research."

At 25, Udo found the direction science was taking unacceptable -- it was increasingly used to control people rather than to help or free them, and geneticists talked about cloning super-races. Udo left the University of British Columbia and went in search of his mission. "I traveled, looked around for several years, and did all sorts of different jobs to get to know more about my society and the world. Eventually, I was poisoned by pesticides and, in search of self-help, re-discovered a childhood passion for health and healing."

He resumed studies, now focused on nutrition, health, and human nature. The first edition of this book ("Fats and Oils") was his PhD thesis in nutrition. His M.A. thesis in counseling psychology, entitled "The Nature of Human Nature," will also be published in book form, "when I'm satisfied with my understanding of the details. I want to let my experience of this topic mature a little longer."

Udo pioneered our understanding of the effects of fats, oils, and cholesterol on human health at a time when other writers were quoting wrong information from outdated sources. The result of his painstaking assembly of relevant research resulted in this landmark book, seminal in the field.

His technological innovations include: development of custom-made parts for existing oil presses to protect the oils being pressed from damage caused by light, oxygen, and heat; use of opaque containers for fresh oils to protect them from light; refrigeration or freezing of oils during transport to slow deterioration and shelf-dating of oils to warn consumers about old oils. The use of the name "flax" oil (to distinguish the fresh, unrefined oil made with human health in mind from "linseed" oil, which comes from the same seed but is a paint-grade, refined, rancid, industrial product previously offered for human consumption) was Udo's suggestion. He also helped to pioneer the fresh, unrefined hemp oil that has recently appeared on the market.

Udo has worked with professionals (doctors, pharmacists, dieticians, osteopaths, naturopaths, nutritionists, chiropractors, massage therapists, other healing professionals, educators, veterinarians, and researchers); consumer health organizations; individuals who want to become more educated in nutrition and health; manufacturers who want help formulating high quality products; and developers of machinery and processes for making products with health in mind.

As an authority on fats, oils, cholesterol, essential fatty acids, technology for pressing healthy oils, complete nutrient programs for human health, and other health topics, Udo has been invited to tour throughout North America and Europe. Since 1987, he has reached an estimated five million viewers, listeners, and readers. He is particularly appreciated for his detailed, precise, clear, and non-technical style.