Meat and Meat Products Enriched with n-3 Fatty Acids

  • María Teresa Díaz Díaz-ChirónEmail author
  • Ana Rivas-Cañedo
  • Jesús De La Fuente Vázquez
  • Concepción Pérez Marcos
  • Sara Lauzurica Gómez
Part of the Nutrition and Health book series (NH)


Meat is considered to be a good source of protein with high biological value as well as of micronutrients such as minerals (iron, zinc, selenium, …) and vitamins (B6, B12, A, D, …) with a high degree of bioavailability. These micronutrients are either not present in plant-derived food or have poor bioavailability. Consequently, consuming moderate amounts of lean meat as part of a balanced diet makes a valuable contribution to the intake of essential nutrients [1]. However, some constituents of meat, especially in red meat and meat products, have been proposed to be responsible for the development of cardiovascular disease and colon cancer. These elements include the fat content and the fatty acid composition. Meat and meat products are generally classified as “high-fat products”, although the various products available differ markedly in terms of their total fat content. Meat is generally considered to have a fat content in the range 1–20 %, depending on the retail cut and the amount of fat trimmed. Both the fat content and fatty acid composition of meat are influenced by factors such as species, breed, sex, age/weight and diet [2]. Figure 5.1 shows the fat content and fatty acid composition of some meats and meat products obtained from different species. The fat content is usually higher in processed meat products (5–40 %), where large amounts of fatty tissue are used.


n-3 PUFA α-Linolenic acid Eicosapentaenoic acid Docosahexaenoic acid Meat Meat products Nutritional value 



Adequate intake


Butylhydroxy anisole


Butylhydroxy toluene


Myristic acid


Palmitic acid


Stearic acid


Oleic acid


Linoleic acid


Linolenic acid


Eicosapentaenoic acid


Docosahexaenoic acid


Cholesterol oxidation product


Docosahexaenoic acid


Dry matter


Docosapentaenoic acid


Daily recommended intake


Extruded linseed


Extensive-pasture system


Eicosapentaenoic acid


European Food Safety Authority


Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations/World Health Organization


Intensive-concentrate system


Information not available


Monounsaturated fatty acid


Omega-3 fatty acid


Omega-6 fatty acid


Protected linseed and soybean


Protected sunflower meal


Partially replaced


Polyunsaturated fatty acid


Saturated fatty acid


Totally replaced


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • María Teresa Díaz Díaz-Chirón
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ana Rivas-Cañedo
    • 1
  • Jesús De La Fuente Vázquez
    • 2
  • Concepción Pérez Marcos
    • 3
  • Sara Lauzurica Gómez
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Food TechnologySpanish National Institute for Agricultural and Food Research and Technology, Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA)MadridSpain
  2. 2.Department of Animal ProductionComplutense University of MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3.Department of Animal PhysiologyComplutense University of MadridMadridSpain

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