Dietary monounsaturated fatty acids and serum lipoprotein levels in healty subjects

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Dietary monounsaturated fatty acids and serum lipoprotein levels in healty subjects.

Mensink RP.

Department of Human Biology, Limburg University, Maastricht, The Netherlands.

Effects of monounsaturated fatty acids on serum total cholesterol levels in man are often described as 'neutral'. The term neutral, however, is often misinterpreted. It does not mean that one can simply add monounsaturates to the diet without changing the serum total cholesterol level but that, under iso-caloric conditions, monounsaturated fatty acids have similar effects on serum total cholesterol as carbohydrates. Diets high in monounsaturated fatty acids, however, have a more favourable effect on the distribution of cholesterol over the various lipoproteins as compared with diets high in carbohydrates. Thus, the term neutral is misleading. In addition, in contrast with earlier studies, recent studies suggest that at realistic intakes, polyunsaturates and monounsaturates have comparable effects on serum lipoprotein levels. At present, there is no unequivocal explanation to resolve this discrepancy. However, these findings offer subjects on cholesterol-lowering diets a larger choice of food items to choose from to replace products high in the serum cholesterol-raising saturated fatty acids.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-68
Issue number110 Suppl
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994

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