Effects of hypocaloric dietary treatment enriched in oleic acid on LDL and HDL subclass distribution in mildly obese women


Enzo Manzato MD, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Padova, via Giustiniani, 2–35128 Padova, Italy (fax: 0039 49 8212151 ).


Zambon A, Sartore G, Passera D, Francini-Pesenti F, Bassi A, Basso C, Zambon S, Manzato E, Crepaldi G (University of Padova , Padova, Italy). Effects of hypocaloric dietary treatment enriched in oleic acid on LDL and HDL subclass distribution in mildly obese women. J Intern Med 1999; 246: 191–201.

Objective. To study the effects of a carbohydrate-enriched (HiCarbo) or olive-oil-enriched (HiMUFA) hypocaloric diet on plasma lipoprotein levels and physical properties.

Design. A six-month follow-up dietary intervention study with a HiCarbo diet providing 60% of total calories as complex carbohydrates, 15% as proteins and 25% as fats [10% saturated (SFA); 7% monounsaturated (MUFA); 8% polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA)]; or a HiMUFA diet with 40% complex carbohydrates, 15% proteins and 45% fats (10% SFA; 27% MUFA; 8% PUFA).

Subjects. Twenty consecutive, mildly obese, normolipidemic premenopausal women (11 on HiCarbo and nine on HiMUFA diets) and 14 age- and sex-matched, lean controls.

Measurements. Body mass index (BMI), waist/hip ratio, plasma lipoproteins, apolipoprotein (apo) AI and B, LDL and HDL density distribution, and phospholipid fatty acid composition at baseline, and after 3 and 6 months on dietary treatment.

Results. Body weight progressively decreased during the first 3 months and then it stabilized during the following 3 months (–11% vs. baseline in both groups; P < 0.01). LDL-Cholesterol decreased significantly in both groups. HDL-Cholesterol increased significantly in the HiMUFA group, whereas a decreased level was observed in the HiCarbo group. At baseline the obese women had higher very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) and dense LDL-Cholesterol, and lower HDL2 cholesterol levels than the controls; these abnormalities persisted in the HiCarbo diet, whilst a significant decrease in the dense LDL associated with an increase in the HDL2 cholesterol was seen in the HiMUFA diet. HDL3 was not affected by either diet. The LDL/HDL-Cholesterol ratio was not affected by the HiCarbo diet, whilst it was significantly reduced after 6 months of HiMUFA diet as compared with baseline. Apo AI increased in the HiMUFA group, and decreased in the HiCarbo group.

Conclusions. Both diets were effective in decreasing body weight. At steady weight conditions, only the HiMUFA diet improved LDL and HDL subclass distribution abnormalities present in mildly obese normolipidemic women.