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Int J Food Sci Nutr. 1996 Mar;47(2):103-10.

Psyllium husk fiber supplementation to the diets rich in soybean or coconut oil: hypocholesterolemic effect in healthy humans.

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Department of Health Science and Human Ecology, California State University, San Bernardino, CA 92407, USA.


The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of psyllium husk fiber supplementation to the diets of soybean and coconut oil on serum lipids in normolipidemic humans. A 28-day study was divided into four 7-day experimental periods. Dietary periods were soybean oil (SO), soybean oil plus psyllium fiber (SO + PF), coconut oil (CO) and coconut oil plus psyllium fiber (CO + PF), and were arranged to a randomized cross over design. Ten subjects consumed controlled diet containing 30% fat calories (20% from test oils and 10% from controlled diet) and 20 g per day of psyllium during fiber supplementation periods. SO + PF diet significantly reduced serum cholesterol compared with SO diet (P < 0.001). CO + PF diet significantly reduced serum cholesterol compared with CO diet (P < 0.014). Hypocholesterolemic response was greater with SO + PF compared with CO + PF (0.36 mmol 1(-1) vs 0.31 mmol 1(-1)). Reductions in low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and apolipoprotein (apo) B were parallel to reductions of serum cholesterol. SO diet decreased, while CO diet increased serum cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and apo B. Very-low density lipoprotein cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol and apo A-1 were unaffected by psyllium fiber and saturation of fat. Reduction of serum cholesterol was due to reduction of LDL cholesterol. Psyllium fiber supplementation lowered serum cholesterol regardless of saturation level of dietary fat.

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