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Food Res Int. 2019 May;119:469-476. doi: 10.1016/j.foodres.2018.12.045. Epub 2018 Dec 26.

Eight-week hempseed oil intervention improves the fatty acid composition of erythrocyte phospholipids and the omega-3 index, but does not affect the lipid profile in children and adolescents with primary hyperlipidemia.

Author information

1
Division of Human Nutrition, Department of Food, Environmental and Nutritional Sciences, Università degli Studi di Milano, Milan, Italy.
2
Department of Public Health and Pediatric Sciences, Università degli Studi di Torino, Turin, Italy.
3
Department of Public Health and Pediatric Sciences, Università degli Studi di Torino, Turin, Italy. Electronic address: ornella.guardamagna@unito.it.

Abstract

Children affected by primary hyperlipidemia have a high risk of developing cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) during adulthood. Several studies have reported a positive association between the intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) and improvements in lipid markers and CVD risk. Dietary supplements may represent a potential strategy in the management of hyperlipidemia. In this context, the effectiveness of hempseed oil (HSO) rich in PUFAs (particularly linoleic acid (LA) and α-linolenic acid (ALA)) in the modulation of hyperlipidemia has been poorly investigated. The present pilot study aimed to explore the impact of HSO supplementation on the serum lipid profile and fatty acid (FA) composition of red blood cells (RBCs) in children and adolescents with primary hyperlipidemia. A randomized, 8 week long, parallel dietary intervention study was performed. Thirty-six hyperlipidemic probands (6-16 years) on diet therapy were randomized into two groups: the HSO group, receiving 3 g of HSO providing 1.4 g of LA and 0.7 g/day of ALA, and the control group. Both groups received specific dietary guidelines. Before and after the intervention, blood samples were collected and the serum lipid profile, FA composition of RBCs and omega-3-index were analyzed. Eight weeks of supplementation with HSO significantly (p < .01) reduced the RBC content of total saturated and monounsaturated FAs (-5.02 ± 7.94% and - 2.12 ± 2.23%, respectively), increased the levels of total n-3 and n-6 PUFAs (+1.57 ± 1.96% and + 5.39 ± 7.18%, respectively) and the omega-3 index (+1.18 ± 1.42%), but failed to affect the serum lipid profile compared to the control group. In conclusion, our findings seem to support the contribution of HSO supplementation in improving the RBC phospholipid composition and omega-3 index, while no effect was observed regarding modulation of the lipid profile. Further controlled studies are necessary to achieve a complete understanding of the effects of HSO in the modulation of hyperlipidemia and CVD risk in this and other target groups.

KEYWORDS:

Dietary intervention study; Fatty acid composition of red blood cells; Hempseed oil supplement; Hyperlipidemic children; Lipid profile

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