Earlier this month I attended the New Harvest™ blogger event in Philadelphia, where I learned an incredible amount about the benefits of Omega-3 and why we need a more sustainable way to produce Omega-3 supplements.
How is Omega-3 fish oil sourced?
Have you ever wondered how many fish go into making Omega-3 fish oil?
1 kilogram of fish oil
So what about vegetarian alternatives? Well, flaxseed, broccoli and nuts are all incomplete sources of Omega-3s. They only contain ALA, which converts very poorly into EPA, the “good stuff” in Omega-3s for heart health. (Fatty fish contain EPA, ALA and DHA. DHA is good for the brain and nervous system and EPA is good for heart health and possibly promotes positive mood. Most fish oils contain only EPA and DHA.)
Even if you don’t care about overfishing, many people experience unpleasant “fishy burps” when taking a fish oil supplement. There are also concerns about ocean-sourced contaminants in fish oil like mercury, lead and BPAs. Plus, some fish oil is high in cholesterol. In fact, New Harvest’s trail of their Omega-3 product showed that DHA in fish oil may increase cholesterol by 14%. (This was a finding in their six-week, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study of 110 healthy men and women, ages 21-70 years old.)
Of course, eating the right foods like salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines, albacore tuna and anchovies can help get Omega-3 into your diet. However, only 1 of out 10 Americans eat fatty fish two or more a week as recommended by the American Heart Association (AHA). The AHA believes that, “Omega-3 fatty acids benefit the heart of healthy people, and those at high risk of, or who have, cardiovascular disease.”
So how much fatty fish would you need to eat a week? About 7 ounces or 1000 mg of Omega-3 worth. That’s a lot of sardines!
New Harvest: a new and better alternative to fish oil supplements
So what’s a person to do if they’re vegetarian, want to stop overfishing, hate to eat fish, or just want a better alternative to fish oil? Well, you can run down to your nearest GNC store and grab a bottle of New Harvest. (Before going, print out this $2 off New Harvest coupon.)
The benefits of New Harvest
- A vegetarian source – made from yeast, a renewable source, not fish
- A favorable oil profile – contains no cholesterol, no PCBs and no mercury, cadmium or lead
- Highly concentrated – 600mg EPA in every 1200mg soft gel
- Natural form – natural triglyceride form, like the natural form found in food
- No unpleasant aftertaste or odor
How is New Harvest Omega-3 EPA made?
New Harvest is made from yarrowia lipolytica, a type of yeast that eats sugar and metabolizes it into an oil that is 50% EPA and 50% other healthy (zero cholesterol) vegetable oils.
- Yeast are fed corn sugar and other nutrients in food-grade stainless steel tanks, and grow and multiply under tightly controlled, sterile conditions
- Over time, Omega-3 rich oil is accumulated inside the yeast.
- The yeast is separated from the fermentation broth, then washed and dried. The resulting yeast is broken open and the oil is extracted
- The oil is then refined and purified to the highest quality standards and encapsulated in 1200 mg vegetarian soft gels.
Here’s what the yeast and oil look like:
New Harvest is looking to drive down the cost and expand the scale of their process to make their EPA product accessible to more people. They plan to expand into different product forms as the business grows, such as something you can add to or sprinkle on your food.
Why am I taking New Harvest?
Like most people, I don’t get enough Omega-3 through food alone. (I love sardines, but everyone looks at me funny when I eat them.) So I’ve been taken Omega-3 fish oil supplements for years.
Also, I have normal cholesterol levels, but they’re on the slightly high range of OK due to my higher than normal HDL (good cholesterol) levels. It’s probably something that’s genetic, since it’s been that way since I was 19. Even so, I’d like to lower my overall cholesterol numbers, and feel a little better taking New Harvest over regular fish oil capsules.
I also love the idea that fermenting yeast is a whole lot more sustainable than overfishing our already stressed oceans.
Where can you get more information on New Harvest?
You can connect with New Harvest:
- on their website at newharvest.com
- on Facebook at facebook.com/NewHarvestEPA
- on Twitter at twitter.com/NewHarvestEPA
Disclosure: New Harvest paid for my flight, several meals, and lodging during the event. All opinions are my own.
Also, New Harvest is a DuPont product. I have a slight relationship with DuPont through a blog I wrote for an online DuPont magazine years ago, for which I won several awards. They did not hire me directly. Instead, I was hired by their content provider agency. I’ve also had the opportunity to test out some of their no stick pan prototypes through one of their PR agencies.