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Eur J Clin Nutr. 2001 Nov;55(11):922-31.

A diet containing rapeseed oil-based fats does not increase lipid peroxidation in humans when compared to a diet rich in saturated fatty acids.

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  • 1Section for Geriatrics/Clinical Nutrition Research, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.



To compare the effects of a rapeseed oil-based diet containing an increased proportion of easily oxidised polyunsaturated fatty acids such as alpha-linolenic acid with a diet rich in saturated fatty acids on the degree of lipid peroxidation in the human body.


A randomised cross-over study.


Nineteen healthy moderately hyperlipidemic subjects (six women and 13 men, age 50+/-8 y and body mass index (BMI) 24.5+/-2.6 kg/m(2)) were given a rapeseed oil-based diet (RO) and a control diet (SAT) rich in saturated fatty acids during two consecutive 4 week periods separated by a 4 week wash-out period. Biomarkers of lipid peroxidation and antioxidants were analysed in plasma and urine.


No significant differences in plasma or urinary levels of free 8-iso-prostaglandin F(2alpha), plasma total 8-iso-prostaglandin F(2alpha) plasma hydroperoxides or plasma malondialdehyde were observed between the RO and SAT diets (P=0.14-0.95). A higher concentration of serum gamma-tocopherol was detected after the RO diet compared to the SAT diet (P<0.001), whereas the serum alpha-tocopherol concentration and plasma antioxidative capacity did not differ between the two test diets. The total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and LDL/HDL ratio were lower after the RO diet compared to the SAT diet (P<0.001), while HDL cholesterol and total triglyceride levels were similar after the two diets.


These results suggest that a rapeseed oil-based diet rich in alpha-linolenic acid does not seem to increase the degree of lipid peroxidation in plasma and urine compared to a diet rich in saturated fats. This is possibly due to a sufficient content of antioxidants in the rapeseed oil diet to increase circulating concentrations of antioxidants that may protect unsaturated fatty acids from oxidation.


Swedish Council for Forestry and Agricultural Research and Foundation for Geriatric Research.

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