Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Plant Sterol Margerine Useful In Cholesterol Management

Date:
March 9, 2000
Source:
CSIRO Australia
Summary:
Australian trials give evidence that naturally-occurring plant sterols can help reduce cholesterol levels

CSIRO trial results released today provide significant scientific evidence to show that naturally-occurring plant sterols can help reduce cholesterol levels.

The results show that cholesterol can be reduced up to 10 per cent in three weeks in men and women with elevated blood cholesterol by including a margarine spread enriched with plant sterols in the normal Australian diet.

The study compared the effects on blood cholesterol of a plant sterol-enriched spread with a standard polyunsaturated spread.

“Many new foods are claimed to have health benefits over and above those of traditional foods. However, to be credible, the claimed health benefits must withstand scientific investigation,” said Dr Peter Clifton, Director of the Clinical Research Unit, CSIRO Health Sciences and Nutrition.

After eating a margarine containing plant sterols for 3 weeks, the subjects experienced a fall in LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol of an average of 9.6 per cent. The significance of this reduction is highlighted by research which indicates that a 10 per cent reduction in cholesterol can, over time, reduce the risk of heart disease by up to 20 per cent (1). Beneficial HDL-cholesterol levels were unaffected.

Plant sterols are natural ingredients in many everyday foods including vegetables, nuts and seeds. Although the cholesterol-lowering effect of plant sterols has been known for over 40 years, enriching spreads with plant sterols is a recent development.

The trial was conducted using subjects aged 35 to 73 years of age who were not on cholesterol-lowering medication or suffering from any diseases likely to affect blood cholesterol levels. They all had cholesterol levels greater than 5 mmol/L, the current desirable limit.

“Polyunsaturated margarines have been a desirable substitute for butter for those people wishing to lower their blood cholesterol levels. These margarines were formulated to have less cholesterol-raising saturated fat and more cholesterol-lowering polyunsaturated fat,” Dr Clifton said.

“The plant sterol spread used in this study retains the benefits of a polyunsaturated spread. However, it has an additional cholesterol-lowering advantage because of the presence of plant sterols which reduce the absorption of cholesterol from the gut. These new spreads may represent the most important innovation in the dietary management of blood cholesterol since the 1960s” said Dr Clifton.

CSIRO Research Dietitian for the study, Ms Manny Noakes, said the subjects’ compliance with the spreads was excellent. “Incorporating the plant sterol spread into the study diet was a simple action which required no behaviour change, yet reductions in blood cholesterol were very impressive “ she said.

Philip Barter, Professor of Cardiology at the Royal Adelaide Hospital and spokesman for the National Heart Foundation, said the results of the CSIRO study provide evidence that spreads enriched with plant sterols are effective in lowering blood cholesterol. “A plant sterol spread is a useful tool in diets designed to lower high blood cholesterol” he said. The margarine used in this study, Flora Pro.activ, was supplied by Unilever Foods, Australia and Unilever Foods funded the study.

Reference:

(1) MacMahon S Aust NZ Journal of Medicine 1994 Vol 24: 120-12

More information: Wendy.Parsons@nap.csiro.au


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by CSIRO Australia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

CSIRO Australia. "Plant Sterol Margerine Useful In Cholesterol Management." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 March 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000308180142.htm>.
CSIRO Australia. (2000, March 9). Plant Sterol Margerine Useful In Cholesterol Management. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000308180142.htm
CSIRO Australia. "Plant Sterol Margerine Useful In Cholesterol Management." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000308180142.htm (accessed September 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins