The Acute Effect of Oleic- or Linoleic Acid-Containing Meals on Appetite and Metabolic Markers; A Pilot Study in Overweight or Obese Individuals

Nutrients. 2018 Sep 26;10(10):1376. doi: 10.3390/nu10101376.


Despite the abundance of plant-derived fats in our diet, their effects on appetite, and metabolic markers, remain unclear. This single-blinded 3-way cross-over pilot study aimed to investigate the ability of the two most abundant dietary plant-derived fats, oleic (OA) and linoleic (LA) acids, to modulate postprandial appetite and levels of circulating appetite and metabolic regulators in overweight/obese individuals. Meals were a high-carbohydrate control, a high-OA or a high-LA meal, and provided 30% of participants' estimated energy requirements. Meals were consumed after an overnight fast, with blood samples collected over 3¼ h. Appetite parameters were assessed via a validated visual analogue scale questionnaire. Hormones and other circulating factors were quantified using multiplex immunoassays. Eight participants (age 45.8 ± 3.6 (years), body mass index 32.0 ± 1.3 (kg/m²)) completed the study. All meals significantly increased fullness and reduced desire to eat. The control and high-OA meals significantly decreased prospective food intake. The high-LA meal increased ghrelin levels (p < 0.05), a hormone which encourages food intake. This was coupled with a significant acute increase in resistin levels, which impairs insulin signaling. Taken together, this study indicates that in overweight/obese individuals, high-LA meals may promote excess energy intake and alter glucose handling, though a larger cohort may be required to strengthen results.

Keywords: appetite regulation; dietary fats; ghrelin; linoleic acid; oleic acid; satiety.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Appetite / drug effects*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Dietary Fats / pharmacology*
  • Eating
  • Female
  • Ghrelin / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Insulin / metabolism
  • Linoleic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Meals
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / diet therapy
  • Oleic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Overweight / diet therapy*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Postprandial Period
  • Satiety Response / drug effects
  • Single-Blind Method


  • Dietary Fats
  • Ghrelin
  • Insulin
  • Oleic Acid
  • Linoleic Acid