Long-term consumption of sunflower and fish oils may harm liver, research group indicates

636530719001433038pourthatoilCROP.jpg

01 Feb 2018 --- The potential health benefits of dietary fat sources such as olive and fish oil have attracted a lot of scientific and consumer interest over the past years. A study led by the University of Granada (UGR), however, has now indicated that the long-term intake of sunflower or fish oils may damage the liver, giving rise to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Three dietary fats (virgin olive oil, sunflower oil and fish oils) were studied, and virgin olive oil was found to be best of the three for preserving the liver throughout life, the researchers say.

NASH is a serious condition which causes inflammation of the liver that is not caused by alcohol abuse and can act as a catalyst for the onset of other diseases such as cirrhosis and liver cancer. The prevalence of NASH in the general population increases with age, affecting 1 percent to 3 percent of children, 5 percent of teenagers, 18 percent of those aged between 20 and 40, 39 percent of those aged between 40 and 50, and more than 40 percent of those over 70.

Click to EnlargeThe research, recently published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, analyzed how the long-term consumption of different dietary fat sources such as olive, sunflower and fish oil affects the liver of rats. UGR researchers conducted a series of comprehensive analyses, including studies of pathological anatomy, ultrastructural analyses using electron microscopes, sophisticated bioenergy techniques, telomere length measurements and oxidative stress. Most importantly, they conducted a comprehensive study of the liver genome to establish how it evolved in line with the consumption of the different oils.

Three dietary fats (virgin olive oil, sunflower oil and fish oils) were studied, and virgin olive oil was shown to be best of the three for preserving the liver throughout life. The research also revealed that sunflower oil induced fibrosis, ultrastructural alterations, gene expression blockades and high oxidation. Meanwhile, fish oil intensified oxidation associated with aging, lowered mitochondrial electron transport chain activity and altered the relative telomere length. Telomeres are the ends of chromosomes, the shortening of which can cause cell aging and the lengthening of which can cause cancer.

As José Luis Quiles Morales, Full Professor of Physiology at the UGR explains: “[the research] demonstrates that fat accumulates in the liver with age, but the most striking finding is that the type of fat accumulated differs depending on the oils consumed and this means that, regardless of this accumulation, some livers age in a healthier way than others and with a greater or lesser predisposition to certain diseases.”

“The alterations caused by the long-term consumption of sunflower and fish oils make the liver susceptible to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, a very serious disease that may act as a catalyst for other liver diseases such as cirrhosis and liver cancer,” Professor Quiles notes, adding that: “virgin olive oil is the healthiest option, which has already been proven in relation to diverse aspects of health.”

According to Professor Quiles, the most innovative aspect of this study is “how it reveals the mechanisms by which virgin olive oil provides these benefits and why the over-consumption of other dietary fats is dangerous. We believe that this study will be very useful in preventing and treating diverse liver diseases.”

Researchers from other institutions, such as the Hospital Complex of Jaen, the Marche Polytechnic University (UNIVPM) in Ancona, Italy, the Pfizer-University of Granada-Andalusian Government Centre for Genomics and Oncological Research (GENYO) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the US, have also participated in this research project.

Related Articles

Nutrition & Health News

Naturex targets oral care market with microbiota-balancing natural active

22 Feb 2018 --- Naturex has launched Bucovia, a natural bio-guided fractionated active aimed at effectively supporting mouth health. Current oral healthcare solutions include biocides (antiseptic or antibiotic), synthetic ingredients that wipe out both good and bad mouth bacteria and increase the virulence of Candida. Naturex’s new solution is composed of active compounds from Solidago virgaurea, a European plant containing saponins that are effective in controlling the growth of mixed fungal-bacterial biofilms. Bucovia regulates Candida albicans genes involved in biofilm formation and inhibits its bacterial partners. 

Nutrition & Health News

Drink up: Wine polyphenols may improve oral health

22 Feb 2018 --- Wine polyphenols might be good for your oral health, researchers report in ACS' Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. Previous research had already pointed to the heart and colon health benefits of sipping wine, which are possibly due to the beverage's abundant and structurally diverse polyphenols.

Nutrition & Health News

Pterocarpus marsupium extract found to help lower blood glucose in diabetic rodents

22 Feb 2018 --- Pterocarpus marsupium extracts help lower blood glucose and HbA1c levels, increasing the levels of the hormone insulin in diabetic rats. This is according to a recently published study in the Journal of Dietary Supplements. Manufactured by Sami Labs (the manufacturing arm of Sabinsa Corporation), these extracts contain water-soluble C-glycosidic components and lower oxidative stress and inflammatory markers such as TNF-α, IL-6 (and its mRNA) in diabetic hepatic tissue. 

Nutrition & Health News

Chronic heavy drinking major risk factor for dementia: The Lancet

21 Feb 2018 --- Excessive alcohol use is a major risk factor for onset of all types of dementia, especially early-onset dementia, according to a French nationwide observational study, published in The Lancet Public Health journal. Previous research has shown mixed results regarding the effect of alcohol on cognitive health, with some studies showing a possible benefit of light to moderate drinking, while others have found detrimental effects of heavy drinking on dementia risk.

Nutrition & Health News

Low-fat and low-carb diets equally effective, Stanford study finds

21 Feb 2018 --- After years of debate, a new study at the Stanford University School of Medicine has found that neither a low-fat nor a low-carb diet is superior: Cutting either carbs or fats leads to a reduction of excess weight in about the same proportion, according to the study. The study also looked into whether insulin levels or a specific genotype pattern could predict an individual's success on either diet. The answer, in both cases, was no.

More Articles
URL : http://www.nutritioninsight.com:80/news/long-term-consumption-of-sunflower-and-fish-oils-may-harm-liver-research-group-indicates.html