High-fat meals rich in EPA plus DHA compared with DHA only have differential effects on postprandial lipemia and plasma 8-isoprostane F2α concentrations relative to a control high-oleic acid meal: a randomized controlled trial.Am J Clin Nutr. 2014 Oct; 100(4):1019-28.AJ
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) plus docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) supplementation has beneficial cardiovascular effects, but postprandial influences of these individual fatty acids are unclear.
The primary objective was to determine the vascular effects of EPA + DHA compared with DHA only during postprandial lipemia relative to control high-oleic acid meals; the secondary objective was to characterize the effects of linoleic acid-enriched high-fat meals relative to the control meal.
We conducted a randomized, controlled, double-blind crossover trial of 4 high-fat (75-g) meals containing 1) high-oleic acid sunflower oil (HOS; control), 2) HOS + fish oil (FO; 5 g EPA and DHA), 3) HOS + algal oil (AO; 5 g DHA), and 4) high-linoleic acid sunflower oil (HLS) in 16 healthy men (aged 35-70 y) with higher than optimal fasting triacylglycerol concentrations (mean ± SD triacylglycerol, 1.9 ± 0.5 mmol/L).
Elevations in triacylglycerol concentration relative to baseline were slightly reduced after FO and HLS compared with the HOS control (P < 0.05). The characteristic decrease from baseline in plasma nonesterified fatty acids after a mixed meal was inhibited after AO (Δ 0-3 h, P < 0.05). HLS increased the augmentation index compared with the other test meals (P < 0.05), although the digital volume pulse-reflection index was not significantly different. Plasma 8-isoprostane F2α analysis revealed opposing effects of FO (increased) and AO (reduced) compared with the control (P < 0.05). No differences in nitric oxide metabolites were observed.
These data show differential postprandial 8-isoprostane F2α responses to high-fat meals containing EPA + DHA-rich fish oil compared with DHA-rich AO, but these differences were not associated with consistent effects on postprandial vascular function or lipemia. More detailed analyses of polyunsaturated fatty acid-derived lipid mediators are required to determine possible divergent functional effects of single meals rich in either DHA or EPA. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01618071.