Health Benefits of Poly Unsaturated Fatty Acids(Assignment) | Nutrition | Saturated Fat


My sincere thanks to Dr.T.Madujit for conducting this course and providing us an opportunity to search about a current topic which is interesting and knowledge based. His guidance to make this manuscript a success is immense. And I take this as an opportunity to thank all who guided and helped to prepare this article. The scientists all around the world who have done researches and reviews earlier in this field also receive my humble salutations.

Types of dietary sources and their consumption levels are discussed. Many dietary sources are discussed where PUFA are available in considerable amounts. cancer. diabetes. safflower and soybean oils) and animal meat. fish (e. structural and metabolic functions and these are elaborated. . Some benefits have been proven but some not yet or evidences are inconclusive. The unsaturated fatty acids believed to be having lots of health benefits. The major roles of lipids can be classified energy storage. and immune disorders. sunflower.Abstract Lipid is an ester which is made out of glycerol and fatty acid/s. thrombogenesis and fibrinolysis. energy providing. milk. maize. Health benefits of fatty acids are considered mainly. They can be acting against some diseases and thought to have beneficial effects against diseases which have been and yet to be proven are considered here. salmon. Basically these dietary sources contain n-3 or n-6 PUFA. skin diseases (such as atopic eczema and psoriasis). herring. The unsaturated ones can be divided into monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) and have several nomenclatures according to the number of carbon atoms in the chain. mackerel. Essential fatty acids are Linoleic acid Alpha-linolenic acid and some of these provide the essential fatty acids (EFA) for human. These fatty acids can be saturated or unsaturated ones. atherosclerosis. Diseases considered are coronary heart diseases (CHD). These sources can be classified as plant originated such as vegetable oils (e. blood pressure. In this article our main consideration is focused on PUFA.g.g. tuna. sardines) egg. number of double bonds between carbon atoms and their position from methyl end or carboxylic end.

structural and metabolic roles. The dietary sources and PUFA levels they contain are to be discussed. herring. cancer. .g. diabetes. sardines) egg. skin diseases (such as atopic eczema and psoriasis). Unsaturation can be by a single C=C or many and accordingly mono and poly unsaturated fatty acids are defined. maize. This classification is according to the availability of C=C bonds and their position in the chain of fatty acids. Dietary sources could be plant or animal sources such as vegetable oils (e.g. Diseases considered are coronary heart diseases (CHD). Health benefits such as decreasing or controlling some hazardous diseases are to be discussed some benefits have been proven but some not yet or evidences are inconclusive. They can be named omega (ω) or n and delta (∆) types. fish (e.Introduction Fatty acids are a component of lipids and made out of hydrocarbon chain. and immune disorders. thrombogenesis and fibrinolysis.6 and 9 fatty acids. tuna. EPA and DHA are essential n-3 PUFA and they are available basically in the fish based foods. sunflower. milk. energy providing. They can be classified as saturated and unsaturated. Major roles of PUFA are discussed they can be classified into energy storage. Some may have fewer amounts of references to discuss as the researches still in progress. Composition in some fish oils. atherosclerosis. safflower and soybean oils) and animal meat. They Dietary intake levels of some of these sources are found. There are mainly omega 3. Several categories of these fatty acids are available and their nomenclature is going to be discussed. intakes of EPA and DHA and percentage contribution from food groups by dietary habit are to be discussed. blood pressure. mackerel. salmon.

they are often described with a common or trivial name. So these are defined as essential fatty acids. 6th or 9th carbon from the omega terminal the fatty acid is called as omega-3 (ω-3). in plant lipids and in some seed oils). Number of carbons could vary from 2 to 30. Most unsaturated fatty acids contain cis configuration rather than trans configuration double bonds (these are mainly occurring in ruminant fats such as cow’s milk. but they are conjugated (-C-C=C-C=C-C. In some PUFA. Numbering could be started from the carbonyl carbon end (delta (∆) end) or methyl carbon (omega (ω) or n terminal).The most number of fatty acids have straight chains of an even number of carbon atoms.conjugated double bonds) (8) and some unusual ones having polymethylene-interrupted or widely seperated polyenes (or non-methyleneinterrupted fatty acids). the double bonds are not seperated by a methylene (CH2-) group. the number of double bonds and the position of the double bond closest to the methyl carbon.Types of poly unsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) A fatty acid is made up of hydrocarbon chain of varying chain length with a methyl group one end and carboxylic group at the other end. Short hand method relies upon identifying the number of carbon atoms in the chain. position of the first double bond from the methyl end is given with the term omega (ω) or n. If the first C=C is present at the 3rd. omega-6 (ω-6) and omega-9 (ω-9) respectively. the number of double bonds. Systematic name derived from the number of carbon atoms in the acyl chain. Human subjects cannot synthesize the simplest n-6 and n-3 PUFA. Commonly they have 12 to 22. They are Linoleic acid (18: 2n-6) and Alpha-linolenic acid (18: 3n-3). Other than these. If the carbon chain contain double bond/s those fatty acids are considered as unsaturated fatty acids: and a fatty acid containing two or more double bonds is called poly unsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Normally PUFA are separated by a single methylene group are called as divinylmethane pattern (7).A suffix enoic denotes that the fatty acid is an unsaturated one and at the end of the chain there is a carboxylic group. (-C=C-C-C-C-C=C-) Saturated and unsaturated fatty acids both have systematic or chemical names and trivial names. . If the numbering has been started from the latter. the position of the double bond which has been found by counting the carbonyl carbon as carbon 1 and their configuration (Cis or Trans). acid Stearidonic acid (STD) (18:4n-3) Eicosatrienoic acid (ETE) (20:3n-3) Eicosatetraenoic acid (ETA) 20:4 (n-3) Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) (20:5n-3) Docosapentaenoic acid (DPA.Table1.13.14.18.-octadecatetraenoic acid all-cis- acid all-cis-7.15-octadecatrienoic acid all-cis-6.17-eicosatetraenoic acid all-cis-5.18.1: Omega-3 fatty acids (59) Short hand notation (16:3n-3) Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) (18:3n-3) Trivial name Chemical name/ systematic name all-cis 7.19docosapentaenoic acid all-cis-4.17-eicosatrienoic acid all-cis- acid all-cis-6.8.12. Clupanodonic acid) (22:5n-3) Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (22:6n-3) Tetracosapentaenoic acid (24:5n-3) Tetracosahexaenoic acid (Nisinic acid) (24:6n-3) .19docosahexaenoic acid all-cis- acid all-cis-9.12.

13.Table 1.10.and poly unsaturated (59) .10.16-docosatetraenoic acid all-cis-4.14-eicosatrienoic acid all-cis- acid Dihomo-γ -linolenic acid (DGLA) (20:3n-6) Arachidonic acid (AA) Docosadienoic acid Adrenic acid Docosapentaenoic acid (Osbond acid) (20:4n-6) (22:2n-6) (22:4n-6) (22:5n-6) Table acid all-cis-11.2: Omega-6 fatty acids (59) Short hand notation (18:2n-6) (18:3n-6) (20:2n-6) Trivial name Chemical name/ systematic name Linoleic acid γ-linolenic acid (GLA) Eicosadienoic acid all-cis-9.14-eicosadienoic acid all-cis-8.13.14-eicosatetraenoic acid all-cis-13.12-octadecadienoic acid all-cis-6.3: Omega-9 fatty acids. mono.16-docosadienoic acid all-cis-7.

8.Trivial name Oleic acid Eicosenoic acid Mead acid Erucic acid Nervonic acid Short hand notation (18:1n-9) (20:1n-9) (20:3n-9) (22:1n-9) (24:1n-9) Chemical name/ systematic name cis-9-octadecenoic acid cis-11-eicosenoic acid all-cis-5.11-eicosatrienoic acid cis-13-docosenoic acid cis-15-tetracosenoic acid Dietary sources of poly unsaturated fatty acids: .

cereal based diets as the fatty acids has to be synthesized from carbohydrates. Proportions of unsaturated to saturated fatty acids in cow’s milk change according to the season. mackerel. The oil collected from fatty fish flesh or lean fish livers are termed ‘fish oil’ and it is rich in VLC n-3 PUFA EPA and DHA (8). Some seed oils contain moderate to high proportions of relatively unusual fatty acids (e. Composition depends on the season. In Ruminants 90% of the unsaturated fatty acids are hydrogenated by bacteria and other micro organisms before they reach the adipose tissue and it contain less amount of PUFA than MUFA . maize. arachidonic acid (20:4n6).Fatty acids in fats. phospholipids.g.g. tuna. Oils like soybean. γ-linolenic acid (18:3n-6) in borage (starflower) and evening primrose Meat is an important source of the very long chain (VLC) n-6 fatty acid. cod) or fatty/oily fish that store lipid as TAG in the flesh (e. sunflower. oils and food stuffs are mainly esterified to glycerol as tri acyl glycerides (TAG). safflower and soybean oils) and products made from those oils (e. margarines). Fish can be classified into lean fish that store lipid as TAG in the liver (e. some nuts. flaxseeds and flaxseed (linseed) oil also contain alpha-linolenic acid.g. as they store fats as triacylglycerols in the liver and in the flesh respectively. diet and the variety of species (4).g. Important dietary sources of the linoleic acid include vegetable oils (e. Inclusion of vegetable oils (soy bean oil) in the diet will increase the linoleic acid in them (1). herring).g. So inclusion of fat supplements such as safflower oil will help to produce more fat in them as normal feed leads them to produce fat from carbohydrates. Fish could be separated as lean fish (e.(1) High amounts of medium and short chain fatty acids and small amounts of PUFA are available in ruminant milk.1 PUFA composition in some fish oils . Terrestrial animals such as ruminants. Table 2. glycolipids and other lipids.Phospholipid in the eggs contain significant amount of PUFA (3). cod) and fatty fish (e.g.g. sardines). salmon. pigs and poultry are also act as dietary sources. Milk collected in the winter season consists of more unsaturated milk (2) . The fish oils are normally rich in PUFA of n-3 category even though some types mainly have MUFA. mackerel. Adipose tissues of poultry and pigs contain mainly saturated and mono unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) if they are given with low fat. herring.

Fatty acid(g/100g total fatty acids) 18:2 n-6 20:4 n-6 20:5 n-3 22:6 n-3 Herring Menhaden Cod liver Trout liver 1 trace 3 3 2 2 14 10 2 1 6 27 3 1 16 7 .

.3 Fish 6258 0.8 5. The table above shows.8 7. fish.7 89. meat.01 20.9 n Intake (g/d) Dairy Eggs White fish Fatty fish Fish Products&dishes 14. 1986) Table 2. vegetarians.01 0 1 0 0 0 0 92.3 0 1 DHA Veg 170 0.001 0 11.4 2. As expected. non-fish sources are probably important in the diets of vegetarians and meat-eaters(6).8 16. fisheaters. Intakes of EPA and DHA and percentage contribution from food groups by dietary habit (groups contributing ‡ 5% to intake of either EPA or DHA) All 7056 0.6 0 6.8 0 0 Fish 5952 0.6 Soups and sauces 0.02 10.3 0 0.7– 18% of that of fish-eaters.5 88.6 Veg 108 0. dairy and soups and sauces whereas for meat-eaters the main sources were meats and spreading fats. for fish-eaters the fatty fish supplied the majority of dietary EPA and DHA.1 6.2 64 17.1 All 7366 0.13 0 0.5 4.2 All fish 81. meat-eaters.8 0 0 15.7 36.7 1.4 0. The mix of fatty acids consumed also varies in accordance with the fatty acid compositions of .3 3.6 59.3 Spreading fats 6.(Adapted from Gunstone et al.(2001) EPA and are essential n-3 PUFA and they are available basically in the fish based foods. for vegetarians the main sources of EPA and DHA were spreading fats.2 Meat 938 0.2 17.2.7 5.5 Meats 6.3 3.8 6.7 61.15 0 0.7 Veg.7 0.1 0 42.8 0 0 0 0 0 0 88. Adapted from Welch AA et al.4 0 0 83. There are large differences in fat intake among countries with average intakes among adults varying from < 20 g/d in some developing countries to > 100g/d in some developed countries.1 6.2 63.09 2 0..8 0 0 EPA Meat 996 0.11 1. Although total intake of EPA and DHA in the diet of vegetarians and meat-eaters was only 0.4 50.

because of its drying and hardening properties when exposed to the air and sunlight. structural and metabolic functions. Other sources are the structural lipids present in the plant and animal cell membranes contain phospholipids and glycolipids. linseed has been grown for its oil. with the exception of fish oils. neurotransmitters and local growth . This is because these “linola” types. essential fatty acids can be converted in the body as non. In muscle and offal fats have a higher proportion of arachidonic acid (1). Major roles of PUFA: The major roles of lipids can be classified energy storage. sunflower oil (52 g/100g total fatty acids) and soybean (52 g/100g total fatty acids) in relatively higher amount than other seed types (1). Linoleic acid is available in maize (50g/100g total fatty acids). energy providing.1% Linoleic acid and 47. Seed oils are the energy storage for many plants. But the breeders have also produced linseed varieties that give oils with fatty acid profiles for culinary uses.45). varnishes and linoleum. Their fatty acid composition differs and mainly consists of saturated and mono unsaturated fatty acids. and arachidonic acid. containing a high proportion of linoleic acid and a low proportion of linolenic acid (5). In many developing countries fat intake is increasing. the myelin sheath of nerves and the rods of the retina have specialized functions and highly specific lipid compositions (46).4% Linolenic acid as PUFA. which is used in the manufacture of paints. permeability and conformation of membranes. Average fat consumption has changed over time and continues. Traditionally. Plant leaves have linoleic. For example.essential fatty acids (11. Fatty acids have many diverse functions in cells: their principal roles are as energy sources.the fats and oils used in food preparation and of the food stuff eaten. They have important structural roles in maintaining the fluidity. Out of these alpha linolenic is the most important and green vegetables are a good source of it (1). In the membranes they play an important role in metabolic control via the inositol lipid cycle which is involved in cell responses to a range of hormones. It contains higher amount of PUFA than storage lipids in animals. alpha linolenic. Some more seeds such as oil of linseed contain 24. while in developed countries fat intake has tended to decline (10).

particularly the prostanoids and the leukotrienes which are formed via the cyclo-oxygenase and lipoxygenase pathways.e. arachidonic acid and DHA. The spectrum of eicosanoids produced can be influenced by the unsaturated fatty acid composition of the diet (48). longer chain derivatives of linoleic and alpha linolenic acid (i. The supply of long chain PUFA. in the same concentration as human milk (52). For people who had myocardial infarction. to the fetus is crucial for normal development. The most active period of cell division and organogenesis is in the first weeks of pregnancy (51). 50). The premature infant is specifically denied the high input of long chain EFA selectively provided by the placenta during the fetal brain’s rapid period of growth in the last trimester of pregnancy. often short-lived compounds with 20 carbon atoms produced by cells to act in their immediate environment). There is little evidence of an association between consumption of MUFA and CHD risk. In the early development of a child PUFA is vital. In membranes PUFA also play a critical role in metabolic control as precursors of the eicosanoids( which are a complex group of highly biologically active. This may be due to a deficiency of long chain EFA whilst the infant is in utero(54). Fairly small intake of fish is protective against is protective against CHD death (12-14). It is important that the EFA intake during the preconception period satisfies the quantitative and qualitative need for a fat store to guarantee energy and EFA provision in preparation for the early part of pregnancy when appetite may be affected (52). cognitive and learning ability and the vascular system could all be adversely affected if the supply is inadequate (49. The dominant species of phosphatidyl inositol (Ptdlns) in the plasma membrane contains arachidonic acid as well as stearic acid (18:0) (47). retinal function.factors. Infant milk formulae which provide the main nutrient intake of infants should supply DHA. fish consumption has reduced the death rate butt surprisingly more non. Neural development. The provision of the equivalent amount of linoleic acid and alpha linolenic acid in infant milk formulae is probably not an adequate substitute. The premature and low birth weight infant has an increased risk of neuro-developmental handicap (53). In human milk. arachidonic acid and DHA) account for about 1% of the total fatty acids. and possibly arachidonic acid. . Health benefits: Against coronary heart diseases (CHD): Results are fairly contradictorily spread.fatal heart attacks (15).

It is not certain whether n-3 PUFA can inhibit atherosclerosis in man but fish oils may be of some benefit in preventing restenosis following angioplasty (25). The shift in thromboxane metabolism towards TXA3 formation at the expense of the more strongly prothrombotic TXA2. Dietary EPA and DHA inhibit the development of atherosclerosis in dogs. might be one of the factors responsible for thereduced tendency of platelets to aggregate(55). Dietary induced enrichment of platelet membranes with n-3 PUFA reduces the responsiveness ex vivo of platelets to the aggregating agents such as collagen. . Against atherosclerosis also called “hardening of the arteries”: A reduction in plasma total and LDL cholesterol concentrations and an increase in plasma HDL cholesterol and apoprotein A1 lead to decreased atherosclerosis in animals and in human(20). Experimental atherosclerosis is most strongly influenced by the saturated fatty acid content of the diet. Dietary intake of EPA and DHA lead to a marked reduction in plasma TAG and VLDL cholesterol concentrations if they are consumed in amounts greater than 2-3g/day (18-19). HDL cholesterol concentrations are increased but may be decreased by much higher intakes of n-3 PUFA (more than 10g/day) (16). Substitution of saturated fatty acids by MUFA and n-6 PUFA will usually reduce experimental atherosclerosis (21).Partial replacement of saturated fatty acids by n-6 PUFA may reduce the risk of a CHD event. Against thrombogenesis and fibrinolysis: Changes in the dietary unsaturated fatty acids cause changes in the fatty acid composition of phospholipids of platelet membranes and changes in the subsequent eicosanoid spectrum. More consistent effects are found with n-6 PUFA than with n-3 PUFA. ADP and thrombin (26). Large oral doses of n-3 PUFA also appear to prolong the bleeding time and reduce platelet adhesiveness (27). Intakes of linoleic acid greater than 12% of dietary energy also lead to a reduction in HDL cholesterol concentrations and are therefore not advised (16-17). but has not been shown to reduce risk from all causes. pigs and primates by mechanisms independent of plasma cholesterol concentrations (22-24). they lead to a reduction of total and LDL cholesterol in the plasma (18). Against plasma lipids: Experimental studies have shown that when MUFA or PUFA replace C12-C16 saturated fatty acids in the diet. formed from n-6 PUFA.

Supplementation with fish oil or with EPA causes a modest clinical benefit in psoriasis. probably via effects on eicosanoid biosynthesis (40. One possible mechanism may be a restoration of the normal release of endothelium. which contains GLA. 41) Evening primrose seed oil. Preliminary data suggest a possible beneficial effect of dietary enrichment with unsaturated n-3 fatty acids on some microvascular complications of diabetes (36. The evidence of animal models suggests that n-3 PUFA inhibit but n-6 PUFA are a necessary extra pre-requisite for the promotion and maintenance tumor growth (31-33). Against diabetes: Fatty acids of the n-6 series lower total and LDL cholesterol.Against blood pressure: Fish oils induce a small reduction in blood pressure provided they are given in daily doses supplying about 3g or more of the n-3 PUFA. PUFA of the n-6 series do not have any demonstrable effect on blood pressure when consumed in normal amounts (30). but the long chain n-3 fatty acids tend to cause impaired glycaemic control in non-insulin dependent diabetic subjects. . Against skin diseases: Human skin is functionally highly dependent on unsaturated fatty acids which not only contribute to the integrity and barrier function of the skin (38) but also act as a source of mediators that are important in inflammatory skin diseases.derived relaxing factor (EDRF) in endothelial cells which have been damaged by atherosclerosis or injured by exposure to high blood pressure (29) . 35). Unsaturated fatty acids of the n-6 series have no consistent effects on carbohydrate metabolism in diabetes (34). The mechanism for the reduction in blood pressure is unknown. produces a symptomatic improvement for atopic eczema but does not change the underlying disease state (42). Sebum also contains essential fatty acids which may play role in hair growth (39). 37). The reduction is more evident in those with mild to moderate hypertension than in normotensive people (28). fatty acids of the n-3 series have less consistent effects (34. Against cancer: The evidences for human cancer are inconclusive and scanty.

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