[Effect of copper supplementation on lipid profile of Venezuelan hyperlipemic patients]

Arch Latinoam Nutr. 2004 Dec;54(4):413-8.
[Article in Spanish]


It has been assumed that most Western diets satisfy the requirement of copper/day because of ubiquitous presence of this element in most foods. Recent studies have shown that dietary copper (Cu) may often fall below the estimated daily requirements, what could determine a deficiency of this trace element. This deficiency is associated with hypercholesterolemia and hypertrigliceridemia, both in human and experimental animals. In the present intervention study was examined the effect of the administration of 5 mg of Cu/day in 73 patients (treated group), of both genders, with ages between 26 and 48 years, with high serum levels of total cholesterol and triglycerides without pharmacological treatment and compared with 73 hyperlipemic subjects non-treated with copper (control group) who were matched by gender, age, body weight, smoking habits, calories and fat intake, and physical activity. Before copper administration, a sample of blood was obtained for serum determinations of copper, zinc and lipids. At the end of the experimental period (45 days), a new sample of blood was taken for the corresponding determinations. The results suggest the existence of a marginal deficiency of the trace element in 38% of the subjects and demonstrate that copper supplementation decreases (p < 0.05) serum levels of total cholesterol (r = -0.976), triglycerides (r = -0.972), LDL-cholesterol (r = -0.961) and zinc (r = -0.980) with a slight increment (r = 0.894) of HDL-cholesterol. These findings demonstrate that copper can be used in the treatment of the patients with hypercholesterolemia and hypertriglyceridemia. The mechanisms by which Cu determines these changes are not known.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Copper / administration & dosage*
  • Copper / blood
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hyperlipidemias / blood
  • Hyperlipidemias / diet therapy*
  • Lipids / blood*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Venezuela
  • Zinc / blood*


  • Lipids
  • Copper
  • Zinc