Differential effect of unsaturated oils and butter on blood glucose and insulin response to carbohydrate in normal volunteers

Eur J Clin Nutr. 1992 Mar;46(3):161-6.


Plasma glucose and insulin responses were monitored in normal volunteers after a standard carbohydrate meal with unsaturated oils (olive and corn oil, in identical volumes) or butter. Both unsaturated oils almost totally blunted the glycaemic response; butter, instead, only delayed the plasma glucose rise, without significantly changing the area under the curve. The insulin rise was essentially unaffected by the three experimental meals, only a slight delay in the peak being observed with no differences between unsaturated oils and butter. These findings support previous data indicating reduced glucose levels after prolonged administration of olive oil, and reduced glycaemic response, in the absence of clear-cut insulin changes, differentiates unsaturated oils from indigestible fibres; it may be linked to an altered polysaccharide handling at the intestinal level.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism*
  • Butter
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Fats, Unsaturated / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Insulin / blood*
  • Male


  • Blood Glucose
  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Fats, Unsaturated
  • Insulin
  • Butter