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IntEncap™ branded microencapsulation products offer high LCPUFAs concentrations suitable for product application at all stages of life. EPA, DHA and ARA long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFAs), are a special type of fatty acid. They each play an important role in our bodies and health throughout our lifetimes. Most people cannot naturally produce enough so they have to be obtained through the diet.
During pregnancy and lactation, maternal requirements for DHA increase significantly because it is needed for the normal development of the eyes, brain, and central nervous system of the growing foetus. Sufficient supply of DHA is especially important during the last trimester of pregnancy, when a baby’s brain develops fastest and the growing foetus needs up to 70 mg a day.1,2
Babies continue to accumulate DHA into the brain, eyes and central nervous system up until about 18 months of age.3,4 Because the body’s ability to produce DHA is limited it must come from the mother.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women should increase their intake of DHA to support their growing baby. The European Food Safety Authority recommends that pregnant and breastfeeding women take an additional 100-200mg DHA daily to recommendations for healthy adults.5 Reference
Two LCPUFAs, DHA and ARA play very important roles in early brain and eye development.6,7 The levels of DHA and ARA in the brain rapidly increase during the last trimester of pregnancy and throughout the first two years of life. Infants and young children create very little DHA and ARA, so they need to get it from breast milk and/or infant formula.
The European Food Safety Authority recommends 140 mg ARA for infants aged up to 6-months and 100 mg of DHA for infants and toddlers from birth up to 2 years of age.8 Reference
DHA and EPA are essential building blocks of brain cells that ensure normal development. DHA is particularly important in children as a child’s brain is made up of up to 15% DHA.9 DHA has also been shown to improve cognition in children. Specifically:
• Reading performance
• Verbal learning
• Relational memory
• Visual acuity
For optimal growth and development, The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends children aged 4-18 consume 125-250 mg of preformed EPA and DHA daily.10 Reference
DHA continues to support brain and eye function throughout life. In addition to being the major fat found in the brain and eyes, DHA is also a key component of the tissue found in the heart and cardiovascular system. DHA is recommended by many Heart Associations and National Dietary Guidelines to promote good cardiovascular health.
On average, the typical Western diet contains less than 100mg/day of DHA – well below the minimum amount recommended by expert bodies around the world. Thus, adults are recommended to supplement their daily diet with DHA.
Based on the level of scientific evidence The European Union permits the following approved health claims according to Regulation 1924/2006:11
• DHA and EPA contribute to the maintenance of normal blood pressure
• DHA and EPA contribute to the maintenance of normal blood triglyceride levels
• DHA contributes to maintenance of normal brain function
• DHA contributes to the maintenance of normal vision
• EPA and DHA contribute to the normal function of the heart Reference
Omega-3 PUFAs are now identified as potential key nutrients, safe and effective in the treatment and prevention of several negative consequences of ageing.12
As dietary intake and nutrient absorption decline with age, supplementation with Omega-3 EPA and DHA is beneficial for older adults.
In the elderly EPA and DHA omega-3 PUFAs positively influences:
• brain function13
• cardiovascular system12
• immune function12
• cognitive decline in older people13. Reference