Luckily you can rely on the scientists over at the Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology in Germany: Dirk Dannenberger and his colleagues have just published a paper that sheds some light on the beneficial side of this ostensibly nasty link between the fatty acid make-up of the feed and the fatty acid composition of the meat of the animals we eat.
N6 in N3 out, N3 in N6 out - you see, it works both ways!
In their quest to find a way to change the fatty acid composition of beef products (German Corned beef (GCB), tea sausage spread (TSS), scalded sausage (SS)) the scientists simply replaced the regular maize silage + concentrate and soybean meal based diet with a diet containing grass silage + concentrate with added rapeseed cake (12%) and linseed oil (3%) and *surprise* the amounts of short chain and long chain omega-3 fatty acids increases by 160%, 130% (EPA) and 70% (total long-chain PUFA = EPA, DHA, DPA).
|Figure 1: Detailed comparison of the fatty acid content (mg/100 g) in Longissimus muscle of German Holstein bulls fed the regular corn + soy based (control) vs. grass + linseed based (experiment) diets a different diet (Dannenberger. 2013)|
"n-3 PUFA from beef were found to be product-specifically transferred into the corresponding beef products"(Dannenberger. 2013)would suggest. After all, the increase in short chain and total long-chain omega-3s in the corned beef was only 40% and 50% and thus 75% and 29% lower than the increase in the "raw material".
So where did the good omega-3s go?
Well, I guess some of you will already have got it. German Corned Beef if freakin' lean. With only 2% fat the reason for the absence of omega-3s is thus simply that the fatty cuts don't even make it into the end product.
Once we have made that important step from thinking that all animal fat must be bad, a simple change in the ingredient profile of our animals' feed could make a big difference to our health... what? No, you can already buy meat like that... you must be kiddin' me, right? ;-)
|This is not what you want: Farmed Atlantic salmon - raised with & fried in soy *yummy* (learn why)|
How? Well, that's the CVD risk reducing effect of positive affect that was established in a large prospective study with 10 years of follow-up by Karina Davidson from the Department of Medicine, Center for Behavioral Cardiovascular Health at the Columbia University Medical Center in 2010 - I know I am so caring, but you don't have to thank me for that. I mean who would ready my stuff if it was not for you?
- Dannenberger D, Nuernberg K, Herdmann A, Nuernberg G, Hagemann E, Kienast W. Dietary PUFA Intervention Affects Fatty Acid- and Micronutrient Profiles of Beef and Related Beef Products. Foods. 2013; 2(3):295-309.
- Davidson KW, Mostofsky E, Whang W. Don't worry, be happy: positive affect and reduced 10-year incident coronary heart disease: the Canadian Nova Scotia Health Survey. Eur Heart J. 2010 May;31(9):1065-70.