Postprandial LDL phenolic content and LDL oxidation are modulated by olive oil phenolic compounds in humans

Free Radic Biol Med. 2006 Feb 15;40(4):608-16. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2005.09.027. Epub 2005 Oct 18.


Olive oil phenolic compounds are potent antioxidants in vitro, but evidence for antioxidant action in vivo is controversial. We examined the role of the phenolic compounds from olive oil on postprandial oxidative stress and LDL antioxidant content. Oral fat loads of 40 mL of similar olive oils, but with high (366 mg/kg), moderate (164 mg/kg), and low (2.7 mg/kg) phenolic content, were administered to 12 healthy male volunteers in a cross-over study design after a washout period in which a strict antioxidant diet was followed. Tyrosol and hydroxytyrosol, phenolic compounds of olive oil, were dose-dependently absorbed (p<0.001). Total phenolic compounds in LDL increased at postprandial state in a direct relationship with the phenolic compounds content of the olive oil ingested (p<0.05). Plasma concentrations of tyrosol, hydroxytyrosol, and 3-O-methyl-hydroxytyrosol directly correlated with changes in the total phenolic compounds content of the LDL after the high phenolic compounds content olive oil ingestion. A 40 mL dose of olive oil promoted a postprandial oxidative stress, the degree of LDL oxidation being lower as the phenolic content of the olive oil administered increases. In conclusion, olive oil phenolic content seems to modulate the LDL phenolic content and the postprandial oxidative stress promoted by 40 mL olive oil ingestion in humans.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Antioxidants / pharmacokinetics*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Diet
  • Humans
  • Lipid Peroxidation*
  • Lipoproteins, LDL / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Olive Oil
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Oxidative Stress*
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol / administration & dosage
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol / analogs & derivatives
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol / pharmacokinetics
  • Plant Oils / chemistry*
  • Postprandial Period*


  • 3-O-methylhydroxytyrosol
  • Antioxidants
  • Lipoproteins, LDL
  • Olive Oil
  • Plant Oils
  • 3,4-dihydroxyphenylethanol
  • 4-hydroxyphenylethanol
  • Phenylethyl Alcohol