“For years, GOED has been tracking and evaluating global EPA+DHA recommendations,” Harry Rice, VP of Regulatory Scientific Affairs at GOED, told NutraIngredients-USA.
“Due to the wide variance and large quantity of recommended intakes established by governmental, quasi-governmental, and expert scientific organizations, our board decided that GOED should develop our own set of recommendations that can simplify the message since more and more of our members have sought our opinion about an appropriate intake,” he added. You can see GOED's infographic here.
A good amount, no matter what life stage
For comparison, the USDA does recommend about 8 ounces per week of a variety of seafood, which provide an average consumption of 250 mg per day of EPA and DHA.
GOED’s recommendation for the general adult population is similar to that of France, and hits the middle ground when compared to what Russia recommends (1,300 mg) and what most other Western European countries recommend (250 mg).
“The different recommendations are a result of slightly different interpretations of the scientific literature,” Rice said. “One of the issues with 250 mg/day is that it's not clear if it's sufficient to adequately protect a large enough percent of the population.”
Back in 2004, the International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids (ISSFAL) had already come up with the 500mg per day recommendation. It took more than a decade for GOED to concur.
“We went through a process of reviewing each of these recommendations and the science underlying them to establish our own recommendations,” Dr Rice said. “After a thorough review, GOED concluded that it was in agreement with the recommendation/opinion put forth by the subcommittee of ISSFAL that 500mg of EPA and DHA per day would meet basic nutritional needs of the general population.”
But like most cases, there isn’t such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. GOED also supplied recommendations for special populations, such as pregnant and lactating women (700 – 1000mg), or people with additional health conditions such as high blood pressure (> 1g). “We also established two higher tiers because there are unique conditions in which consumers may need greater intakes. Those higher tiers also rely on the recommendations from other organizations.”