The new research from The University of Reading reveals that the UK's four to 18 year-olds are only getting up to 25 per cent of their recommended daily Omega-3 intake.
Experts suggest children should aim for at least 450mg per day of EPA and DHA, the Omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish, as these nutrients play an important role in supporting brain Health and function.
However, these latest findings commissioned by Omega-3 supplement specialists, Equazen eye q, revealed that the diets of younger age groups in particular are hugely deficient in these vital nutrients.
Dietitian and expert in child nutrition, Dr Carrie Ruxton, comments: “This latest research from Dr Rachael Gibbs at The University of Reading, shows a clear nutritional deficiency of Omega-3s, especially in the diets of children and teenagers. A recent Government survey showed that adults consume less than 40 percent (54g) of the recommended 140g of oily fish per week, but these latest statistics suggest even bigger nutritional gaps in our youngsters.
“Omega-3 and Omega-6 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, the so-called ‘healthy fats’, play a role in almost every cell of our bodies, especially the brain. Around two thirds of us do not eat oily fish on a regular basis and overall consumption especially in young people is well below what it should be, so supplements have a major role to play in boosting Omega-3 intakes.
“Research on Omega-3 suggests benefits for cognitive health across a wide age spectrum with some studies reporting particular benefits for supplements combining EPA, DHA and GLA in a 9:3:1 ratio, such as found in Equazen eye q. Parents whose children are infrequent oily fish consumers should definitely consider giving them an age-appropriate Omega-3 supplement,” adds Dr Ruxton.
Femalefirst Taryn Davies