Seed oils are Better for Controlling Cholesterol than Olive oil, Study Finds

Exchanging saturated fat in the diet with unsaturated fat reduces low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, according to an analysis of data from dozens of studies. Apart from the unsaturated fats, seed oils such as sunflower have the strongest effect.

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This new study led by Dr. Lukas Schwingshackl from the German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbrueck, was the first to carry out an analysis that lets the impact of several oils and solid fats on blood lipids to be assessed in a single model.

Researchers in earlier studies have compared the effect of replacing a food rich in saturated fat, such as butter, with one rich in unsaturated fat, such as plant-based olive oil and sunflower. However, the result makes it quite hard to find out which of the many plant-derived oils have the maximum benefit.

Dr. Schwingshackl and team used a statistical technique called network meta-analysis, which is gaining ground in health research as a way to gather evidence from vast amounts of data through the use of “direct and indirect comparisons.” The team use network meta-analysis to find answers.

Dr. Schwingshackl explains that the beauty of this method is that a lot of results can be compared to different interventions concurrently.

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According to the doctor, “the end results makes it easier to identify the best oil for a “specific outcome.”

The method, for instance, allows a comparison of butter with sunflower oil to be inferred indirectly by analyzing the results of two trials: one that tested butter against olive oil directly, and another that tested sunflower against olive oil directly.

The new findings feature in a paper that is now published in the Journal of Lipid Research.

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