List of top 20 most influential scientific references on the omega-6:omega-3 ratio (6:3R) from John Robinson MD, PhD. Articles address dietary recommendations and how agricultural production affects the 6:3R.

Observational Studies

(Dyerberg-1978-Lancet) Dyerberg, J., Bang, H. O., Stoffersen, E., Moncada, S., and Vane, J. R. (1978) Eicosapentaenoic acid and prevention of thrombosis and atherosclerosis? Lancet 2, 117-119 

[See Dyerberg-1978-Lancet-clarification for clarification by Dyerberg and Bang that low omega-6:omega-3 ratio was a better predictor of atherogenicity than increased consumption omega-3.]

(Brouwer-2004-The Journal of Nutrition) Brouwer, I. A., Katan, M. B., and Zock, P. L. (2004) Dietary α-Linolenic Acid Is Associated with Reduced Risk of Fatal Coronary Heart Disease, but Increased Prostate Cancer Risk: A Meta-Analysis. The Journal of Nutrition 134, 919-922.

(de Goede-2011-PLoS One) de Goede, J., Verschuren, W. M., Boer, J. M., Kromhout, D., and Geleijnse, J. M. (2011) Alpha-linolenic acid intake and 10-year incidence of coronary heart disease and stroke in 20,000 middle-aged men and women in the Netherlands. PloS one 6, e17967.

Increased ALA reduces risk of stroke.

Interventional Studies

(Lucas-2011-The American Journal of Clinical Nu) Lucas, M., Mirzaei, F., O’Reilly, E. J., Pan, A., Willett, W. C., Kawachi, I., Koenen, K., and Ascherio, A. (2011) Dietary intake of n−3 and n−6 fatty acids and the risk of clinical depression in women: a 10-y prospective follow-up study. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 93, 1337-1343 [See references therein on omega-6:omega-3 influence on depression].

(Beauchesne-Rondeau-2003-Am J Clin Nutr) Beauchesne-Rondeau, E., Gascon, A., Bergeron, J., and Jacques, H. (2003) Plasma lipids and lipoproteins in hypercholesterolemic men fed a lipid-lowering diet containing lean beef, lean fish, or poultry. Am J Clin Nutr 77, 587-593.

(Davidson-1999-Arch Intern Med) Davidson, M. H., Hunninghake, D., Maki, K. C., Kwiterovich, P. O., Jr., and Kafonek, S. (1999) Comparison of the effects of lean red meat vs lean white meat on serum lipid levels among free-living persons with hypercholesterolemia: a long-term, randomized clinical trial. Archives of internal medicine 159, 1331-1338.

(McAfee-2011-Br J Nutr) McAfee, A. J., McSorley, E. M., Cuskelly, G. J., Fearon, A. M., Moss, B. W., Beattie, J. A., Wallace, J. M., Bonham, M. P., and Strain, J. J. (2011) Red meat from animals offered a grass diet increases plasma and platelet n-3 PUFA in healthy consumers. The British journal of nutrition 105, 80-89.

(Ramsden-2013-BMJ) Ramsden, C. E., Zamora, D., Leelarthaepin, B., Majchrzak-Hong, S. F., Faurot, K. R., Suchindran, C. M., Ringel, A., Davis, J. M. & Hibbeln, J. R. (2013). Use of dietary linoleic acid for secondary prevention of coronary heart disease and death: evaluation of recovered data from the Sydney Diet Heart Study and updated meta-analysis. BMJ 346, e8707.

Dietary Supplementation

(Trikalinos-2012-Effects of Eicosapentanoic Aci) Trikalinos, T. A., Lee, J., Moorthy, D., Yu, W. W., Lau, J., Lichtenstein, A. H., and Chung, M. (2012). in Effects of Eicosapentanoic Acid and Docosahexanoic Acid on Mortality Across Diverse Settings: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Trials and Prospective Cohorts: Nutritional Research Series, Vol. 4, Rockville (MD). Pp.

(Rizos-2012-JAMA) Rizos, E. C., Ntzani, E. E., Bika, E., Kostapanos, M. S., and Elisaf, M. S. (2012) Association between omega-3 fatty acid supplementation and risk of major cardiovascular disease events: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA : the journal of the American Medical Association 308, 1024-1033.


(Duckett-1993-J Anim Sci) Duckett, S. K., Wagner, D. G., Yates, L. D., Dolezal, H. G., and May, S. G. (1993) Effects of time on feed on beef nutrient composition. Journal of animal science 71, 2079-2088.

This paper documents the switch in fatty acyl content in the cell membranes (membrane remodeling) of the cattle when switched from a pasture-fed to a grain-fed diet.

(Aldai-2011) Aldai, N., Dugan, M. E., Kramer, J. K., Martinez, A., Lopez-Campos, O., Mantecon, A. R. & Osoro, K. (2011). Length of concentrate finishing affects the fatty acid composition of grass-fed and genetically lean beef: an emphasis on trans-18:1 and conjugated linoleic acid profiles. Animal 5, 1643-52.

A thorough analysis of how the diet of continental cattle alters the fat content of their beef. Correlating the feed-dependent changes in fat profile of beef and their effect on human health requires further investigation.

(Daley-2010-Nutr J) Daley, C. A., Abbott, A., Doyle, P. S., Nader, G. A., and Larson, S. (2010) A review of fatty acid profiles and antioxidant content in grass-fed and grain-fed beef. Nutrition journal 9, 10.


(Shingfield-2013-Animal) Shingfield, K. J., Bonnet, M., and Scollan, N. D. (2013) Recent developments in altering the fatty acid composition of ruminant-derived foods. Animal : an international journal of animal bioscience 7, 132-162.

(McAfee-2010-Meat Sci) McAfee, A. J., McSorley, E. M., Cuskelly, G. J., Moss, B. W., Wallace, J. M., Bonham, M. P. & Fearon, A. M. (2010). Red meat consumption: an overview of the risks and benefits. Meat Sci 84, 1-13.