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A single daily dose of soybean phytosterols in ground beef decreases serum total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in young, mildly hypercholesterolemic men

Matvienko, Oksana A., Lewis, Douglas S., Swanson, Mike, Arndt, Beth, Rainwater, David L., Stewart, Jeanne, Alekel, D. Lee
American journal of clinical nutrition 2002 v.76 no.1 pp. 57-64
beta-sitosterol, blood lipids, campesterol, college students, functional foods, ground beef, low density lipoprotein cholesterol, margarine, men, particle size, risk, soybeans, stigmasterol
Background: Consumption of phytosterol-supplemented margarine lowers total plasma cholesterol (TC) and LDL-cholesterol concentrations in older middle-aged hypercholesterolemic individuals. The effects of incorporating phytosterols into lower-fat foods on the plasma lipids of young men at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease have not been studied. Objective: We tested the hypothesis that a single daily dose of soybean phytosterols added to ground beef will lower plasma TC and LDL-cholesterol concentrations in mildly hypercholesterolemic young men. Design: In a triple-blind, 4-wk study, 34 male college students with elevated plasma TC (5.85 ± 0.70 mmol/L), LDL cholesterol (4.02 ± 0.60 mmol/L), and TC:HDL cholesterol (5.5 ± 1.2) were randomly assigned to the control (ground beef alone) or treatment (ground beef with 2.7 g of phytosterols) group. The phytosterol mixture was two-thirds esterified and one-third nonesterified and consisted of β-sitosterol (48%), campesterol (27%), and stigmasterol (21%). Results: Consumption of phytosterol-supplemented ground beef lowered plasma TC and LDL-cholesterol concentrations and TC:HDL cholesterol from baseline by 9.3%, 14.6%, and 9.1%, respectively (P < 0.001). The LDL particle size did not change, suggesting that the decrease was primarily of particle number. The decreases were similar in subjects with (n = 8) and without (n = 9) a family history of premature cardiovascular disease. No significant changes were found in the control group. Conclusion: Phytosterol-supplemented ground beef effectively lowers plasma TC and LDL cholesterol and has the potential to become a functional food to help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.