Isocaloric substitution of plant sterol-enriched fat spread for carbohydrate-rich foods in a low-fat, fibre-rich diet decreases plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and increases high-density lipoprotein concentrations.Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis 2005; 15(5):337-44NM
BACKGROUND AND AIM
The aim of the study was to determine the effects on plasma cholesterol of replacing a plant sterol-enriched fat spread with carbohydrate-rich foods relative to a diet high in saturated fat.
METHODS AND RESULTS
Twenty-nine men and women, from the general community, with mean age (SD) 48 (14)y, body mass index 29.0 (6.2)kg/m(2), and plasma total cholesterol concentration 6.48 (0.97)mmol/L completed the randomised, crossover dietary intervention. There were three diets: New Zealand diet (NZ diet) high in total (34%kJ) and saturated (15%kJ) fat, a cholesterol-lowering fibre-rich diet reduced in total (30%kJ) and saturated fat (8%kJ) but including a plant sterol spread (PS diet), and the same cholesterol-lowering diet with the plant sterol spread isocalorically replaced with carbohydrate (CHO diet); total fat, 26%kJ; saturated fat 7%kJ. All foods were provided and each diet was followed for four weeks. Mean (SD) plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentration declined from 4.68 (0.91)mmol/L on the high saturated fat diet to 4.12 (0.83)mmol/L (P<0.001) on the carbohydrate diet and 3.76 (0.84)mmol/L (P<0.001) on the plant sterol diet. The 20% decrease on the plant sterol diet was significantly greater (P<0.001) than the 12% decrease on the carbohydrate diet. Relative to the NZ diet, mean (95% CI) plasma high-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentration changed by -0.11 (-0.16, -0.06)mmol/L on the CHO diet but was not different at the end of the PS diet, -0.03 (-0.09, 0.02).
Including a plant sterol-enriched fat spread in a cholesterol-lowering diet produces a more favourable plasma lipid profile than the same diet made lower in total and saturated fat by replacing the spread with carbohydrate-rich foods.