Plant sterol-enriched spread enhances the cholesterol-lowering potential of a fat-reduced diet.Eur J Clin Nutr 2003; 57(1):170-6EJ
To determine the effect of a plant sterol-enriched spread on plasma cholesterol concentrations when replacing butter or a standard polyunsaturated spread in a diet containing 30% of energy fat.
Parallel butter phase followed by double-blind, randomized, cross-over polyunsaturated spread phases.
Volunteer sample of 50 free-living men and women with mean age (s.d.) 46.7 y (10.5), moderately elevated plasma total cholesterol 5.95 mmol/l (0.78), and body mass index 26.0 (3.9) kg/m(2).
Participants ate a moderately low-fat diet (30% of energy) for the 11-week intervention. During the first 3 weeks the diet included 20 g per day of butter. Participants were then randomized to replace the butter with 25 g of polyunsaturated spread with or without 2 g of plant sterols for 4 weeks, crossing over in the last 4 weeks to the alternate spread.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES
Plasma cholesterol and fatty acids.
Replacing butter with a standard polyunsaturated fat spread reduced mean plasma total cholesterol concentrations by 4.6% (from 6.09 (0.82) to 5.81 (0.77) mmol/l, P<0.01) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol by 5.5% (from 3.98 (0.76) to 3.76 (0.74) mmol/l, P<0.05). Replacing butter with a polyunsaturated spread containing plant sterols reduced plasma total cholesterol by 8.9% (from 6.09 (0.82) to 5.55 (0.76) mmol/l, P<0.01) and low density lipoprotein cholesterol by 12.3% (from 3.98 (0.76) to 3.49 (0.72) mmol/l, P<0.01). Plasma high density lipoprotein cholesterol concentration was the same on the three diets.
In people with moderately raised plasma cholesterol concentrations consuming reduced-fat diets the reduction in plasma total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations achieved by replacing butter with a polyunsaturated spread is enhanced by addition of plant sterols.