Changes in LDL fatty acid composition as a response to olive oil treatment are inversely related to lipid oxidative damage: The EUROLIVE study

J Am Coll Nutr. 2008 Apr;27(2):314-20. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2008.10719705.


Objective: The aim of our study was to assess the changes in the fatty acid composition of low density lipoproteins (LDL) after sustained consumption of olive oil at real-life doses (25 mL/day) and their relationship with lipid oxidative damage.

Methods: A multi-center randomized, cross-over, clinical trial with 3 similar types of olive oils, but with differences in the phenolic content, was conducted on 200 healthy European subjects. Intervention periods were of 3 weeks separated by 2-week washout periods. The LDL fatty acid content was measured in samples drawn at baseline and after the last intervention period.

Results: After olive oil ingestion oleic acid concentration in LDL increased (1.9%; p < 0.001) and those of linoleic (1.1%; p < 0.002) and arachidonic acid (0.5%; p < 0.001) decreased. Monounsaturated/polyunsaturated fatty acid and oleic/linoleic acid ratios in LDL increased after olive oil consumption. An inverse relationship between the oleic/linoleic acid ratio and biomarkers of oxidative stress was observed. One unit increase in the oleic/linoleic acid ratio was associated with a decrease of 4.2 microg/L in plasma isoprostanes.

Conclusion: Consumption of olive oil at real-life doses improved the fatty acid profile in LDL, the changes being associated with a reduction of the oxidative damage to lipids.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Apolipoproteins B / blood
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • F2-Isoprostanes / blood
  • Fatty Acids / blood*
  • Humans
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects
  • Lipoproteins, LDL / blood*
  • Olive Oil
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects
  • Plant Oils / administration & dosage*
  • Plant Oils / chemistry
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Triglycerides / blood


  • Apolipoproteins B
  • Blood Glucose
  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • F2-Isoprostanes
  • Fatty Acids
  • Lipoproteins, LDL
  • Olive Oil
  • Plant Oils
  • Triglycerides
  • oxidized low density lipoprotein
  • Cholesterol