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Omega-3 Long-Chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Intake by Ethnicity, Income, and Education Level in the United States: NHANES 2003–2014

1
Department of Pediatrics, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198, USA
2
College of Public Health, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198, USA
3
Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
4
Department of Nutritional Sciences, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA
5
Division of Biomedical Sciences, School of Medicine, University of California Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521, USA
6
College of Allied Health Professions, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2020, 12(7), 2045; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12072045
Received: 7 May 2020 / Revised: 24 June 2020 / Accepted: 26 June 2020 / Published: 9 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Human Health)
Although there are many recognized health benefits for the consumption of omega-3 (n-3) long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA), intake in the United States remains below recommended amounts. This analysis was designed to provide an updated assessment of fish and n-3 LCPUFA intake (eicosapentaenoic (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and EPA+DHA) in the United States adult population, based on education, income, and race/ethnicity, using data from the 2003-2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) (n = 44,585). Over this survey period, participants with less education and lower income had significantly lower n-3 LCPUFA intakes and fish intakes (p < 0.001 for all between group comparisons). N-3 LCPUFA intake differed significantly according to ethnicity (p < 0.001), with the highest intake of n-3 LCPUFA and fish in individuals in the “Other” category (including Asian Americans). Supplement use increased EPA + DHA intake, but only 7.4% of individuals consistently took supplements. Overall, n-3 LCPUFA intake in this study population was low, but our findings indicate that individuals with lower educational attainment and income are at even higher risk of lower n-3 LCPUFA and fish intake. View Full-Text
Keywords: omega-3 fatty acids; eicosapentaenoic acid; docosahexaenoic acid; oily fish; fish oil supplements; ethnicity; income; education omega-3 fatty acids; eicosapentaenoic acid; docosahexaenoic acid; oily fish; fish oil supplements; ethnicity; income; education
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Cave, C.; Hein, N.; Smith, L.M.; Anderson-Berry, A.; Richter, C.K.; Bisselou, K.S.; Appiah, A.K.; Kris-Etherton, P.; Skulas-Ray, A.C.; Thompson, M.; Nordgren, T.M.; Hanson, C.; Thoene, M. Omega-3 Long-Chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Intake by Ethnicity, Income, and Education Level in the United States: NHANES 2003–2014. Nutrients 2020, 12, 2045.

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