MANHATTAN, Kan. -- Thanks to Kansas State University research, part of a healthy diet can include a hamburger rich with omega-3 fatty acids.
Jim Drouillard, professor of animal sciences and industry, developed a technique that enriches ground beef with omega-3 fatty acids -- fatty acids that have been shown to reduce heart disease, cholesterol and high blood pressure. The enriched ground beef is named GreatO Premium Ground Beef and is being sold through Manhattan, Kan.-based company NBO3 Technologies LLC. It will be available mid-February at select retailers in Buffalo, N.Y., and expand to leading retailers and restaurants nationwide later this year.
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in fish and plant oils. The U.S. currently does not have a recommended daily intake of omega-3s, though many doctors and nutritionists recommend between 1,200-1,600 milligrams daily, depending on a person's age and health.
A quarter-pound hamburger made of the enriched ground beef has 200 milligrams of omega-3s and tastes the same as regular ground beef, Drouillard said. This makes the ground beef an alternative for people who want to add or increase their omega-3 fatty acids intake but do not want fish or supplements to do so.
"As a society, Americans' consumption of fish, especially fish that contributes to these omega-3 fats, is quite low compared to other proteins," Drouillard said. "Reasons for this include cost, access to fish and personal preference. Americans do, however, like hamburgers. So if we can give people a hamburger that is rich in omega-3s, it's an alternative form of a product that they already eat and does not require a lifestyle change, which is difficult to make."
The health benefits of omega-3s are not limited to humans. Studies show that dairy and beef cattle with an enriched diet of flaxseed and other omega-3 rich grains have fewer respiratory diseases. The cattle also have higher fertility rates, which helps offset
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Kansas State University