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Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Nov;76(5):942-9.

Olive oil increases the number of triacylglycerol-rich chylomicron particles compared with other oils: an effect retained when a second standard meal is fed.

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Hugh Sinclair Unit of Human Nutrition, School of Food Biosciences, University of Reading, Reading, United Kingdom.



Compared with the postprandial events after a single meal, different events occur when a second meal is ingested 4-6 h after a first meal. There is a rapid appearance of chylomicrons in the circulation carrying fat ingested with the first meal, with a peak 1 h after the second meal.


Our goal was to examine whether different dietary oils have effects on the storage of triacylglycerol as a result of differences in their digestion, absorption, and incorporation into chylomicrons.


A single-blind, randomized, within-subject crossover design was used to study the effects of palm oil, safflower oil, a mixture of fish and safflower oil, and olive oil on postprandial apolipoprotein (apo) B-48, retinyl ester, and triacylglycerol in the S(f) > 400 fraction with the use of a sequential meal protocol.


For triacylglycerol, retinyl ester, and apo B-48, the time to reach peak concentration was significantly earlier after the second meal than after the first meal (P < 0.005). This was apparent with each of the dietary oils. The pattern of the apo B-48 response differed significantly among the dietary oils, with olive oil resulting in higher concentrations after both meals (P = 0.003). The ratio of triacylglycerol to apo B-48 was significantly lower after olive oil feeding than after feeding with the other oils (P = 0.02).


The rapid entry of chylomicrons after the ingestion of a second meal 5 h after a first meal was seen with all of the oils investigated. The short-term ingestion of olive oil produced more chylomicrons than did the other dietary oils, which may have been due to differences in the metabolic handling of olive oil within the gut.

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