Dietary intake of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids: contribution of meat sources.Nutrition 2006; 22(1):47-53N
We examined the relative contributions of meat and fish to the dietary intakes of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCn3PUFAs).
A database detailing 4550 foods and 4298 recipes recorded in the 1995 Australian National Nutrition Survey (NNS95) was updated with new fatty acid compositional data then used to determine intakes from 24-h dietary recalls of 13858 individuals. This approach was validated with food frequency questionnaires from 8321 of these individuals.
Fatty acid intakes were comparable to our previous estimates from NNS95 except for LCn3PUFAs, which were considerably higher. Mean intakes in adults estimated from the 24-h recalls were 75, 71, and 100 mg/d for eicosapentaenoic acid, docosapentaenoic acid (DPA), and docosahexaenoic acid, respectively, giving a total of 246 mg/d. This is 30% greater than our previously published estimate of LCn3PUFA intake, the difference being attributable to inaccuracies in pre-existing data on the fatty acid composition of certain foods, particularly the DPA content of meats. We estimate that 43% of the LCn3PUFAs consumed by adults in the NNS95 survey originated from meat, poultry, and game compared with 48% from fish and seafood. Steak and kidney pies and other meat-containing cereal-based products accounted for an additional 4%. Beef and lamb contributed 28% of the total LCn3PUFA intake, whereas pork and poultry contributed 4% and 10%, respectively. Food frequency questionnaires produced similar results.
Meat is a major source of LCn3PUFA, particularly DPA, for most Australians. When DPA is included in the definition of LCn3PUFAs, almost half the average adult intake of LCn3PUFA appears to originate from meat sources.