Omega-3 Fatty Acid Dietary Supplement National Study
A DSID study of dietary supplements (DS) containing omega-3 fatty acids (also known as n-3 fatty acids and n-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids [n-3 LCPUFA]) was conducted to test representative products for their ingredient content and compare the analytical results to label information. Omega-3 fatty acid DS were defined for this study as fish oil, plant oil and fish/plant oil blends sold for the primary purpose of increasing omega-3 fatty acid intake.
Products identified as representative of the US market were purchased in 2008-2010 nationwide from retail outlets and through direct-to-consumer sales channels. Samples were sent to qualified laboratories for the analysis of fatty acids using validated methods and appropriate quality assurance measures. Relationships between label values and analytical values for the major omega-3 fatty acids, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA; C18:3n-3), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; C20:5n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; C22:6n-3) were evaluated by weighted regression analysis.
Documentation about the methods for sampling and testing samples and a summary of the testing results are reported in the Omega-3 Fatty Acid Research Summary. The statistical results and their National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) application tables (2005-2010) can be downloaded from the Data Files page. An interactive ingredient calculator for Omega-3 Fatty Acid DS is available on the Omega-3 Fatty Acid Calculator page.