Good for your heart, brain, joints and eyesight. Cuts cholesterol levels, keeps skin clear and boosts your immune system. It can even enhance your mood.

Is it the latest wonder-drug developed by scientists? No - it's Omega-3, which is set to become the world's first 'superdooperfood' if attempts to win official recognition for its attributes are successful.

FSA papers show it has been inundated by applications to allow claims to be made for products containing Omega-3 under the EU's new Health Claims Regulation, which will be enforced from 2010.

The FSA has been collecting the claims - including those above - to put forward to the European Food Safety Authority, which has been tasked by the European Commission with testing the science behind them - and either approving them for general use or throwing them out.

Omega-3 fatty acids, found naturally in oily fish and some nuts and seeds, are widely considered to be healthy. Their health benefits for the heart, in particular, have long been accepted.

Omega-3 is already frequently added to yellow fat spreads, dairy drinks and fruit juices, which are sold on the basis they are good for the heart. Now the prospect is looming of a new generation of food products enriched with Omega-3 and marketed as offering a host of sophisticated health benefits, from improving short-sightedness to easing depression.

Nonetheless, experts are warning there could be a long way to go before some of these adventurous claims gain approval. "There are grounds for believing many claims will be substantiated, and I think we will get there, but there's not a great body of evidence yet," said Ray Rice of the Inter­national Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids.

"There is incontrovertible scientific support for saying Omega 3 helps heart health," said Jeya Henry, professor of human nutrition at Oxford Brookes University. "There may be evidence for these other things in the future, but these areas are a work in progress."