Consumption of DHA has numerous beneficial effects, but little is known about these effects during the first few days of the DHA dietary intake. The main objectives of the present study were to determine the time course of DHA incorporation into phospholipids in different mouse tissues and the effects of DHA supplementation on adiponectin and leptin secretion. Mice were fed either a control diet or a DHA-rich diet, and some were killed on days 0, 4, 8, 16 and 32. Some mice were fed the DHA-rich diet for 16 d, and were then maintained on the control diet for sixteen more days (washout period). DHA supplementation increased plasma adiponectin secretion by 2·4-fold as early as 4 d after the initiation of the DHA-rich diet feeding. The adiponectin concentration remained 1·6-fold higher after the 16 d washout period. Plasma leptin levels were significantly lower after 4 d of feeding with DHA. These effects were associated with a significant increase in DHA incorporation in phosphatidylethanolamine and phosphatidylcholine of all analysed tissues (liver, heart and white adipose tissues). DHA mainly got incorporated at the expense of n-6 arachidonic acid. The present data show that DHA rapidly improved the profile of secreted adipokines, and that these protective effects were long lasting.