Factors influencing fatty acid composition of common carp (Cyprinus carpio) muscle.

: There is evidence that n-3 highly unsaturated fatty acids (n-3 HUFA), especially eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), are beneficial for human health, especially for the cardiovascular system. The sources of n-3 HUFA, including EPA and DHA, are scarce in diet consumed by the Czech population. Thus, it would be beneficial to generally increase fish consumption and also to increase the content of the beneficial fatty acids (FA) in locally produced fish and other products. Therefore the overall aim of this paper was to review factors influencing lipid content and composition in common carp, which is the major cultured fish in the Czech Republic, and to identify long term sustainable ways for increasing the beneficial fatty acids in the carp flesh. We conclude that there are several ways to improve the FA composition of common carp in the traditional pond production. High amount of natural food, good supplemental diet containing high level of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and suitable processing and cooking were identified as the most important ones.