Soy in hypercholesterolaemia: a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial

Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Apr;56(4):352-7. doi: 10.1038/sj.ejcn.1601340.


Objective: To study whether Abacor, a product based on isolated soy protein with high and standardised levels of isoflavones and cotyledon soy fibres, was more effective in lowering total and LDL cholesterol than placebo.

Design: Randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind, parallel group, single centre study.

Setting: Primary care in Joensuu, North Karelia, Finland.

Subjects: Subjects were screened from the patient database of the health centre; 30 were randomised to the Abacor group and 30 subjects to placebo. Eight subjects were withdrawn, six from the active group, two from the placebo group.

Intervention: The preparations were given as two daily liquid supplements in addition to the subjects' regular diets for 6 weeks.

Results: Abacor showed a statistically significant lipid-lowering effect as compared to placebo, although an unexpected reduction was seen in the placebo group. The estimated difference between active treatment and placebo was 0.25 mmol/l (95% CI 0.01, 0.50; P=0.049) for total cholesterol, corresponding to reductions of 8.3 and 5.1%, respectively. The difference in reduction of LDL-cholesterol was 0.27 mmol/l (95% CI 0.06, 0.49; P=0.014) and corresponded to a reduction of 13.2% in the active treatment group, and 8.0% in the placebo group. Abacor showed a rapid onset of effect, as compared with placebo. During a wash-out period of 4 weeks after treatment, the subjects returned to pre-treatment cholesterol levels.

Conclusion: Added to a regular diet, Abacor significantly reduced LDL-cholesterol and total cholesterol. These beneficial effects occurred within 6 weeks of treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Humans
  • Hypercholesterolemia / blood
  • Hypercholesterolemia / therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Soybean Proteins / blood
  • Soybean Proteins / therapeutic use*


  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Soybean Proteins
  • Cholesterol