A modelling approach to investigate the impact of consumption of three different beef compositions on human dietary fat intakes

Yvonne Lenighan, Anne Nugent, Frank Monahan, Aidan Moloney, Janette Walton, Albert Flynn, Breige McNulty, Helen Roche

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Objective: To apply a dietary modelling approach to investigate the impact of substituting beef intakes with three types of alternative fatty acid (FA) composition of beef on population dietary fat intakes. Design: Cross-sectional, national food consumption survey – the National Adult Nutrition Survey (NANS). The fat content of the beef-containing food codes (n 52) and recipes (n 99) were updated with FA composition data from beef from animals receiving one of three ruminant dietary interventions: grass-fed (GRASS), grass finished on grass silage and concentrates (GSC) or concentrate-fed (CONC). Mean daily fat intakes, adherence to dietary guidelines and the impact of altering beef FA composition on dietary fat sources were characterised. Setting: Ireland. Participants: Beef consumers (n 1044) aged 18–90 years. Results: Grass-based feeding practices improved dietary intakes of a number of individual FA, wherein myristic acid (C14 : 0) and palmitic acid (C16 : 0) were decreased, with an increase in conjugated linoleic acid (C18 : 2c9,t11) and trans-vaccenic acid (C18 : 1t11; P < 0·05). Improved adherence with dietary recommendations for total fat (98·5 %), SFA (57·4 %) and PUFA (98·8 %) was observed in the grass-fed beef scenario (P < 0·001). Trans-fat intakes were increased significantly in the grass-fed beef scenario (P < 0·001). Conclusions: To the best of our knowledge, the present study is the first to characterise the impact of grass-fed beef consumption at population level. The study suggests that habitual consumption of grass-fed beef may have potential as a public health strategy to improve dietary fat quality.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Early online date12 Dec 2019
Publication statusEarly online date - 12 Dec 2019

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