Marine ingredients provide essential nutrients for human health, indirectly through the farmed animals that we eat and directly through the consumption of fish oil capsules. Just as fishmeal and fish oil play a vital role in the growth and health of farmed fish, these essential proteins, fats, minerals and vitamins are then passed onto humans. For humans, fish provides energy and is a superior source of protein to other animal source foods in terms of total protein and essential amino acid content and digestibility. Among other nutrients, farmed fish are a rich source of vitamin D and calcium (bone and muscle health), vitamin B12 (aids metabolism), Zinc and Selenium (aids immune system).
The other key nutrient for human health in marine ingredients are the long chain omega-3s (EPA and DHA), which are crucial for the health and growth of the farmed animals and in turn pass on the significant health benefits to us. Fish oil supplements are widely consumed with around 20% of the total fish oil produced in 2018 going to this growing industry. It is recommended that healthy adults consume a minimum of 250–500 mg combined EPA and DHA each day as part of a healthy diet. The benefits of consuming EPA and DHA are well known and include:
- Heart health – Omega-3s have been shown to help maintain healthy blood pressure and healthy triglyceride levels and may reduce Coronary Heart Disease (CHD).
- Neurological Health - DHA is the most abundant omega-3 fatty acid in the brain and needs to replenish the supply to function optimally.
- Eye health - DHA is found in large amounts in the retina of the eye, the part of the eye responsible for seeing under different lighting conditions.
- Prenatal health - Omega-3s play an important role in brain and eye development for a growing baby, both during pregnancy and in the first months of life.
Fishmeal and fish oil carry with them several decades of data and information about raw material supply, production, nutrient profile and other detail. With comparatively high protein levels (usually 68-72%), high digestibility (often 90% or more), perfectly profiled amino acid and fatty acid balances, and a range of micronutrients including vitamins and minerals that are essential for heath and growth, fishmeal and fish oil are benchmark aquafeed ingredients against which the performance of other ingredients are measured. They are a known factor in the feed industry, which is not the case with other raw materials.
Source: Omega-3 health benefits - https://alwaysomega3s.com/