The German Reference Values for Nutrient Intake (2008) recommend a supply of n-3 PUFAs at the level of 0.5% of the daily energy intake (ca. 1 g/d). The International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids recommends an intake of at least 200 mg of EPA and/or DHA per day; the total intake of DHA + EPA per day should be about 650 mg, or 0.2% of the daily energy intake, for adults.
Studies investigating risk assessment established that the enrichment of food and feed with DHA- and/or EPA-rich sources may lead to an intake of n-3 fatty acids in humans fourfold greater than the recommended level. The following risks are recognized regarding excessive consumption of n-3 LC-PUFAs:
• A negative influence on the immune defense system, especially in the elderly
• A rise in serum LDL cholesterol
• An extended bleeding time, as in Inuits.
The authorities recommend that, on average, not more than 1.5 g n-3 LC-PUFAs should be consumed from all sources per day. Foods that usually do not contain any fat (e.g., water-based drinks) should not be enriched with n-3 fatty acids.
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