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Seafood Choices: Balancing Benefits and Risks
TABLE 3-1 Differences in Saturated Fat Content Between Commonly Consumed Animal Food Products
Portion Size (ounces)
Saturated Fat (grams)
Regular cheddar cheese
Low-fat cheddar cheese
Regular ground beef (25% fat)
Extra lean ground beef (5% fat)
Fried chicken (with skin)
Roasted chicken (no skin)
Fried fish (catfish)
Baked fish (catfish)
SOURCE: USDA, Release 18.
The 1994–1996 Continuing Survey of Food Intake by Individuals (CSFII) identified several micronutrients that were consumed at levels below the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), including vitamins E and B-6, calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc. Seafood is a good source of zinc and some calcium, e.g., from canned salmon or other fish with bones, which may contribute to the total intake of these nutrients when substituted for other animal food products. For example, a 3-ounce cooked serving of beef, lamb, chicken, or pork contains approximately 10–20 mg of calcium, whereas a 3-ounce serving of canned salmon with bones contains approximately 240 mg. (Source: http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/Data/SR18/sr18.html.)
Nutritional Benefits Associated with Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Optimal Intake Levels for EPA and DHA
There are insufficient data on the distribution of requirements to set an Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) for alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), so an Adequate Intake (AI) was set instead, at approximately the level of current intakes (IOM, 2002/2005). Given that ALA conversion to EPA and DHA is low and variable (Burdge, 2004), intakes of the preformed omega-3 fatty acids may be less than desired under certain physiologic circumstances (see Chapter 2). Despite the number of studies conducted over the past two decades to assess the impact of omega-3 fatty acids in general on health outcomes, optimal intake levels for EPA and DHA are still not defined. The Dietary Reference Intakes (IOM, 2002/2005) did not establish a require-