After more than a decade of research and natural plant breeding techniques, the experts at Nature’s Crops International have developed AHIFLOWER Oil, a proprietary branded form of Buglossoides arvensis seed oil. AHIFLOWER is exclusively available from Nature’s Crops.
AHIFLOWER Oil is the richest commercially available plant source of omega-3 stearidonic acid (SDA) known, offering manufacturers the opportunity to incorporate a sustainable, non-genetically modified, vegan source of omega-3 fatty acids into their products. AHIFLOWER Oil also contains therapeutically beneficial omega-6 gamma linolenic acid (GLA). Since SDA and GLA both bypass the rate-limiting step involving the liver enzyme delta-6 desaturase, our bodies metabolize them far more efficiently than other plant-derived omegas such as alpha linolenic acid (ALA). AHIFLOWER Oil therefore offers a far more efficient omega-3+6+9 solution.
Consumers and formulators seeking a pure, sustainable, traceable source of omega-3 fatty acids that is closer biologically to omega-3 eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) found in fish or algal oils will find that AHIFLOWER Oil provides a game-changing alternative to conventional plant sources of omega-3s. AHIFLOWER Oil acts like “turbo-charged” flax, chia, sacha inchi, or perilla oils in terms of EPA conversion—plus it provides omega-6 GLA usually derived from borage or evening primrose oils. Further, AHIFLOWER OIL has a clean aroma and a pleasingly rich taste that blends well into healthy foods and beverages.
AHIFLOWER Oil is being developed in a range of dietary supplements, nutritional foods, nutraceuticals, pet/equine feeds, and personal care products. Pharmaceutical applications involving AHIFLOWER Oil’s uniquely high SDA content will be developed in the future.
Compare AHIFLOWER Oil to other omega-3 sources. See the chart here to better understand how this unique oil addresses the needs of industry and why it will make such an impact on the omega-3 supply chain.
New AHIFLOWER Oil offers brands and manufacturers the opportunity to offer a non-GM omega 3+6+9 product from a single plant source of unequaled purity and traceability.
Introducing a superior, natural plant source for your family’s daily Omega-3 fatty acids.
Buglossoides arvensis (also known as Lithospermum arvense, Field Gromwell, Corn Gromwell and Bastard Alkanet) is both annual and biennial in habit and is a member of the Boraginaceae family. The genus comprises approximately 18 species, including such well-known plants as borage, echium, comfrey, and forget-me-not. The plant is found throughout North America, Europe, and southeastern Australia.
The Buglossoides arvensis root system consists of a taproot.
Buglossoides arvensis grows to a height of approximately 24 inches (60 cm) with a spread of 6 inches (15 cm) across. The round stems are more or less hairy, and the alternate leaves grow up to 2 inches (5 cm) long and approximately 3/8 inch (1 cm) across.
Buglossoides arvensis has multiple flowering sites. Each flower is approximately 1/4 inch (7 mm) long. The blooming period typically occurs mid-spring to mid-summer and lasts about two months.
Each flowering site ofBuglossoides arvensis can produce four seeds, which are held tightly on the plant until harvest. The seed is approximately 1/8 inch (3-4 mm) in size, tetrahedral in shape, and has a greyish-brown surface that is rough and wrinkled.
5. SEED CONTENT:
Buglossoides arvensis seed oil is a high, natural source of stearidonic acid (SDA). Oil content is typically 20%, of which approximately 20% is SDA, as well as other important essential fatty acids such as 42% alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), 11% linoleic acid (LA), and 5% gamma-linolenic acid (GLA)
More SDA: AHIFLOWER Oil naturally contains up to 20% stearidonic acid (SDA).
Closer To EPA: Unlike flaxseed oil and other sources of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), AHIFLOWER Oil is rich in SDA. AHIFLOWER oil converts up to 3-4 times more efficiently to EPA in the human body than flaxseed oil.
GLA Source: AHIFLOWER Oil contains what many leading nutritionists consider the optimal ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids, which is 4-to-1 or greater.
Clean Aroma and Flavor: No “yuck” factor. No fishy burps.
Non-GMO: AHIFLOWER Oil is non-genetically modified. Developed using only natural selection and patient breeding techniques, it offers the highest SDA content in a commercially-available, non-GMO plant.
Identity-Preserved: AHIFLOWER Oil is the only identity-preserved, non-GMO source of SDA produced following the proprietary Crop Assured 365® identity preservation and quality assurance methods.
Price Competitive: AHIFLOWER Oil is produced from domestically grown plants by farmers under contract with Nature’s Crops International and it can compete commercially with other sources of omega-3 oils.
Flexible Delivery Formats: AHIFLOWER Oil is available in bulk liquid oil, vegan softgels, and water-soluble micro-encapsulated powder.
AHIFLOWER® Oil is one of the richest natural plant-based sources of omega-3 SDA known.
SDA in AHIFLOWER Oil converts more efficiently to the fatty acid found in fish oil. Unlike the omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) found in most plants, AHIFLOWER Oil contains the omega-3 stearidonic acid (SDA) which converts more readily to EPA. The body converts SDA to EPA at a rate of up to 30%, compared to a typical conversion rate of ALA of 3-6%. Thus much larger quantities of ALA oils (such as flaxseed shown below) are required to achieve the same benefit.
Omega-3 stearidonic acid (SDA) in AHIFLOWER™ Oil converts more efficiently in circulating cells in our bodies to long-chain omega-3 EPA found most often in algal and fish oil. Omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is found in many plant oils like flax, chia, perilla, and sacha inchi, however they lack any SDA. AHIFLOWER Oil has the highest commercially-available SDA content from a single non-GM plant.
Not all omega-3s are created equal
In the human body, several precursor fatty acids are converted into heart-healthy eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). Among them, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and stearidonic acid (SDA) are both available from plant sources, but with significant differences.
Conversion efficiency of SDA vs. ALA
Following the consumption of foods containing ALA, human tissues are exposed to very little of the beneficial types of omega-3 fatty acids. As a result, plant sources of ALA, such as flaxseed and canola oils, convert relatively inefficiently to EPA in the human body.
SDA converts efficiently to EPA
Plants that contain SDA, on the other hand, provide much higher conversion to EPA. Moreover, studies have shown that consuming SDA can help maintain heart health through conversion to EPA in the body after ingestion, leading to more tissue enrichment with beneficial omega-3s.
AHIFLOWER™ Oil offers superior levels of SDA in comparison to other naturally occurring plant sources, providing approximately 60% more SDA than echium oil and 6-10 times more than hempseed oil.
In addition to stearidonic acid (SDA), AHIFLOWER® Oil contains alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) for a total omega-3 content >60%—plus the omega-6 fatty acids linoleic acid (LA) and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) for a total omega-6 content >15%—all of which have reported health benefits."
For consumers looking to combine the benefits of taking borage seed or evening primrose seed oils with those of omega-3 oils, AHIFLOWER Oil is an ideal solution because it contains what many leading nutritionists consider the optimal ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids, which is 4-to-1 or greater.
While consumption of essential fatty acids (EFAs) can occur with daily food intake, not all EFAs are metabolized equally in the body. Most notable are the conversion of LA––found in soybean and canola oils––to GLA and the conversion of ALA––found in flaxseed oil––to SDA. Both of these critical conversion steps require the use of a liver enzyme called delta-6-desaturase (D6d). The effectiveness of this enzyme is greatly impacted by factors such as health, diet, and lifestyle. It is often cited as the rate-limiting step in humans not receiving an adequate amount of omega-3 metabolites from their diet.
Since AHIFLOWER Oil naturally contains high levels of SDA, GLA, ALA, and LA, AHIFLOWER Oil greatly increases the biological availability of the required omega-3 metabolites, thus reducing the dependence on this single enzyme. For vegans, vegetarians, and people generally concerned about eco-sustainability and purity in marine-sourced EFAs—AHIFLOWER Oil is an ideal new dietary option. See chart.
Nature’s Crops is in the midst of a 5-year human clinical testing program to understand the measurable nutritional and physiological effects of Ahiflower Oil®. In 2014, Ahiflower Oil was evaluated clinically by the University of Moncton (Canada) in a randomized, double-blinded placebo controlled trial designed to measure the difference between consuming Ahiflower Oil and Flaxseed Oil in terms of long-chain eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) accrual in circulating cells. The results of this trial showed that Ahiflower Oil converts to EPA in circulating cells 300-400% more efficiently than Flaxseed oil. This is due to Ahiflower Oil’s best-in-class omega-3 stearidonic acid (SDA) content, which is the product of alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) metabolism in our bodies. SDA by-passes the delta-6 desaturase liver enzyme rate-limiting step in EPA metabolism. ALA-rich dietary oils like flax, chia, perilla, and sacha inchi contain no SDA, so their conversion to EPA is inherently far less efficient than oils containing SDA.
Ahiflower Oil® is the richest combined effective omega-3+6 fatty acid source from a single non-GMO plant. Ahiflower Oil meets or exceeds all FDA requirements and EU specifications for purity in dietary vegetable oils. Click here to download a simple Specifications Sheet for Ahiflower Oil. Manufacturers seeking to formulate commercial products with Ahiflower Oil may obtain a more detailed specifications sheet after being qualified by Nature’s Crops as an Ahiflower customer.
The following literature references provide substantiation of emerging clinical science on the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acid consumption in foods and dietary supplements:
1. Mozaffarian, D., Wu J.H.Y. Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Cardiovascular Disease, Effects on Risk Factors, Molecular Pathways, and Clinical Events, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Vol. 58, No. 20, 2012.
2. Kris-Etherton. P.M., Harris WS, Appel LJ. Fish consumption, fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids, and cardiovascular disease. Circulation 2002;106:2747-57.
3. Surette, M. The science behind dietary omega-3 fatty acids. Canadian Medical Association Journal 2008; 178(2):177-180.
4. Holman, R.T. (1998) The slow discovery of the importance of omega-3 essential fatty acids in human health. J. Nutr. 128: 427S – 433S.
5. Horrobin, D. F., (1981) Loss of delta-6-desaturase activity as a key factor in aging. Medical Hypotheses 7(9): 1211-1220.
6. Lavie, C. J., Milani, R.V., Mehra, M. R., Ventura H.,O. (2009) Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and cardiovascular diseases. J. Am. Coll. Cardiology 54(7):585-594.
7. Akiba, S., Murata, T., Kitakani, K., Sato. T. (2000) Involvement of lipoxygenase pathway in docosapentaenoic acid-induced inhibition of platelet aggregation. Biol. Pharm. Bull. 23(11):1293-1297.
8. Zuijdgeest-van Leeuwen, S.D., Dagnelie, P.C., Rietveld, T., et al. Incorporation and washout of orally administered n-3 fatty acid ethyl esters in different plasma lipid fractions. Br J Nutr 1999;82:481-8.
9. Surette, M.E., Koumenis, I.L., Edens, M.B., et al. Inhibition of leukotriene synthesis, pharmacokinetics, and tolerability of a novel dietary fatty acid formulation in healthy adult subjects. Clin Ther 2003;25:948-71.
10. Calder, P.C., n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, inflammation and inflammatory diseases. Am J Clin Nutr 2006;83:1505S-19S.
11. Celotti ,F., Durand, T. The metabolic effects of inhibitors of 5-lipoxygenase and of cyclooxygenase 1 and 2 are an advancement in the efficacy and safety of anti-inflammatory therapy. Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat 2003;71:147-62.
12. SanGiovanni, J.P., Chew, E.Y. The role of omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in health and disease of the retina. Prog Retin Eye Res 2005;24:87-138.
13. Jeffrey, B.G., Weisinger, HS, Neuringer, M, et al. The role of docosahexaenoic acid in retinal function. Lipids 2001;36:859-71.
14. Kris-Etherton, P.M., Taylor, D.S., Yu-Poth, S., et al. Polyunsaturated fatty acids in the food chain in the United States. Am J Clin Nutr 2000;71:179S-88S.
15. Simopoulos, A.P., Leaf, A., Salem, N. Jr. Essentiality of and recommended dietary intakes for omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. Ann Nutr Metab 1999;43:127-30.
16. Cunnane, S., Drevon, C.A., Harris, W., et al. Recommendations for intakes of polyunsaturated fatty acids in healthy adults. ISSFAL Newsl 2004;11:12-25.
17. Kris-Etherton, P.M., Harris, W.S., Appel, L.J. Fish consumption, fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids, and cardiovascular disease. Circulation 2002;106:2747-57.
18. Simopoulos, A.P. (2002) The importance of the ratio of omega6/omega3 essential fatty acids. Biomedicine and Pharmacotherapy 56(8):365-379.
19. A study of the diet and metabolism of Eskimos. Meddr Grōnland 1914.
20. Preventing restenosis with fish oils following coronary angioplasty. A meta-analysis. Arch Intern Med 1993.
21. Are dietary recommendations for the use of fish oils sustainable? CMAJ, March 17, 2009
23. Potential clinical benefits of dietary supplementation with marine-life oil. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1991.
24. Therapeutic use of fish oils in companion animals. JAVMA, December 11, 2011.
25. Omega-3: Global Product Trends and Opportunities report, Progressive Grocer, August 2011
26. Omega-3 Fatty Acids in High Demand, Atlanta Natural Health Examiner, November 2011
27. Are dietary recommendations for the use of fish oils sustainable? CMAJ, March 17, 2009
30. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, mongabay.com, September 2009
31. Advice to Eat Fish Hurts Environment: Scientists, CBC News – Technology & Science, March 2009
32. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, mongabay.com, September 2009
33. Low Levels of Omega-3 Fatty Acids May Cause Memory Problems, Neurology, (Journal of the American Academy of Neurology), February 28, 2012.