Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 549746
Title Dietary enrichment of edible insects with omega 3 fatty acids
Author(s) Oonincx, Dennis G.A.B.; Laurent, Sophie; Veenenbos, Margot E.; Loon, Joop J.A. van
Source Insect Science (2019). - ISSN 1672-9609
DOI https://doi.org/10.1111/1744-7917.12669
Department(s) Animal Nutrition
Laboratory of Entomology
EPS
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019
Keyword(s) Acheta domesticus - Alphitobius diaperinus - diet - fatty acids - Hermetia illucens
Abstract

Edible insects are advocated as sustainable and healthy food and feed. However, commercially produced insects are often low in n-3 fatty acids and have suboptimal n-6/n-3 ratios. A certain amount and proportion of these FAs is required to optimize human health. Flaxseed oil consists primarily (57%) out of alpha-linolenic acid. An experiment was conducted to quantify the effect of flaxseed oil provision on fatty acid composition and to determine the quantity needed to attain a beneficial n-6/n-3 ratio. Three species were used in the experiment: house crickets (Acheta domesticus [L.]), lesser mealworms (Alphitobius diaperinus [Pfanzer]) and black soldier flies (Hermetia illucens [L.]). These were provided with either a control diet or a diet enriched with 1%, 2%, or 4% flaxseed oil during their larval/nymphal stage. Fatty acid profiles of diets and insects were determined via GC-MS. The three species had distinct fatty acid profiles on all four diets, but responded similarly to flaxseed oil addition. For each percent added to the diet, the alpha-linolenic acid content of the insects increased by 2.3%–2.7%. Four percent addition increased the n-3 fatty acid content 10–20 fold in the three species and thereby strongly decreased n-6/n-3 ratios from 18–36 to 0.8–2.4. A ratio below 5 is considered optimal for human health and was achieved by 2% flaxseed oil inclusion for house crickets and lesser mealworms, and at 1% inclusion for black soldier flies. Adding a source of n-3 fatty acids to insect diets can thus improve the nutritional quality of insects.

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