The Changing Face of the Omega-3 Category

By:  Keri Marshall MS, ND

Omega-3 is the most researched nutrient in the world.


  • Despite the wide range of research supporting the benefits of omega-3s, a lot of the population is still not consuming a high enough intake 
  • MEG-3® Ultra, a new addition to DSM’s nutritional lipids portfolio, offers highly customizable EPA and DHA combinations containing up to 85% omega-3 from clean, wild ocean fish oil 

There are over 30,000 published scientific papers on omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, making them the most researched micronutrient in the world.[1] Omega-3s are an essential part of daily nutrition, playing a critical role in supporting human health across different life stages. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) provides important brain and eye health benefits, while EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA together promote cardiovascular health. Numerous observed and randomized clinical trials have shown that intake of EPA and DHA may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease developing via:

  • Reduction of blood triglycerides (TGs)
  • Decrease in resting heart rate, blood pressure and inflammation
  • Improved vascular function[2],[3].

There is a significant body of evidence to demonstrate that the benefits of EPA and DHA are supported by a recommended intake of at least 250 milligrams (mg) per day. However, the majority of adults worldwide do not meet the recommended intake and are nutritionally deficient in omega-3s,[4] with most people consuming less than 100mg of EPA and DHA per day. The suboptimal intake level is largely due to the lack of oily fish in modern diets, and experts agree that people are not consuming enough EPA and DHA daily.

A recent DSM survey that interviewed 11,000 respondents across ten countries highlighted that motivations for purchasing omega-3 vary considerably depending on factors such as age, gender, geography and attitudes to health and wellbeing, and demonstrates that a targeted approach must be taken in order to appeal to consumers in specific markets. For example, Russian consumers also associate omega-3 with immunity and Italian consumers tend to be more seasonal with their consumption patterns and associate omega-3 with health benefits such as overall health and cardiovascular health. In contrast, consumers in the UK are less seasonal with their consumption patterns and associate omega-3 closely with joint health.

MEG-3® Ultra, a new addition to DSM’s nutritional lipids portfolio, offers highly customizable EPA and DHA combinations containing up to 85% omega-3 from clean, wild ocean fish oil. MEG-3® Ultra has been developed to reinvigorate the omega-3 supplements category and help dietary supplement manufacturers connect their brand to health-conscious populations. It can help create appealing omega-3 products that are tailored across different life stages and health benefits, such as brain and heart support.

MEG-3® Ultra is powered by the highly advanced and radically efficient 3C Technology - Concentrated, Customized, Consistent -, which isolates and purifies EPA and DHA in higher concentrations, allowing for the development of smaller and easier to swallow pills, three times greater potency, and improved color clarity. The greater concentration helps reduce costs for encapsulation, transport, and display of finished supplements. DSM 3C Technology is also reliable and consistent, as it offers a robust supply chain that’s less dependent on sourcing location or raw material variations.

DSM is the leading global supplier of both marine and unique vegetarian based omega-3 ingredient solutions. A trusted partner, DSM uses its unparalleled expertise, global network of Nutrition Innovation Centers and investment in consumer insights to create customer brand-centric innovations and provide services and solutions that help its customers innovate and grow.

For more information on MEG-3 Ultra and 3C Technology, click here.

Published on

01 March 2017


  • Nutritional Lipids
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Industry News
  • Article
  • Senior Management


5 min read

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[1] 30,995 citations found in PubMed for omega-3 PUFA (DHA, EPA), 3 May 2016 (search terms: omega-3, fish oil, cod liver oil, eicosapentaenoic, docosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids).

[2] Lavie CJ, Milani RV, Mehra MR, Ventura HO. Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Cardiovascular Diseases. J Am Coll Cardiol 2009;54:585-94.

[3] Deckelbaum RJ, Leaf A, Mozaffarian D, Jacobson TA, Harris WS, Akabas SR. Conclusions and recommendations from the symposium, Beyond Cholesterol: Prevention and Treatment of Coronary Heart Disease with n-3 Fatty Acids. Am J Clin Nutr 2008;87(6):2010S-2S.

[4] Stark et al., Global survey of the omega-3 fatty acids, docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in the blood stream of healthy adults, Progress in Lipid Research, 20 May 2016

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