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The effect of a fish diet on serum lipids in healthy human subjects

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Author: Lossonczy, T.O. von · Ruiter, A. · Bronsgeest-Schoute, H.C. · Gent, C.M. van · Hermus, R.J.J.
Source:American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 8, 31, 1340-1346
Identifier: 228408
Keywords: Linoleic acid · Cholesterol blood level · Etiology · Geographic distribution · Adult · Aged · Animal · Cheese · Chemistry · Cholesterol · Comparative Study · Diet · Dietary Fats · Fatty Acids · Female · Fish Products · Fishes · Human · Lipids · Lipoproteins · Male · Meat · Middle Age · Obesity · Triglycerides


A cross-over study was done with 19 male and 23 female volunteers living in a monastery and a convent, respectively. The effect of a fat fish (mackerel) diet on the blood serum lipid composition was studied. As the normal diet of these volunteers was of the lacto-ovo-vegetarian type, a control diet in which the fish was replaced by full-fat cheese was used. Subjects consuming the fish diet had a daily uptake of polyunsaturated acids of the ω3 family of about 8 g; comparable amounts of linoleic acid were ingested with both diets. Both diets were consumed for a period of 3 weeks. Serum cholesterol was slightly but significantly (7.5%) lower and serum triglycerides considerably lower (35%) on the fish diet, whereas high density lipoprotein cholesterol increased slightly. Lipoprotein analysis showed a strong very low density lipoprotein decrease by the fish diet while, in the men, both low and high density lipoproteins increased. The fatty acid composition of serum lipids showed considerable differences. C20:5ω3 increased in all fractions and C22:6ω3 was found in the triglycerides and the phospholipids, but not in the sterol esters. These increases occurred chiefly at the expense of C18:1ω9 and, in particular, C18:2ω6, which indicates a replacement of ω6 by ω3 acids. Long-chain monoenoic acids which are abundant in the mackerel were not detected in any serum lipid fraction. Chemicals/CAS: linoleic acid, 1509-85-9, 2197-37-7, 60-33-3, 822-17-3; Cholesterol, 57-88-5; Dietary Fats; Fatty Acids; Lipids; Lipoproteins; Triglycerides