Original Article


, Volume 46, Issue 4, pp 365-370

First online:

Dietary Cocoa Butter or Refined Olive Oil Does Not Alter Postprandial hsCRP and IL-6 Concentrations in Healthy Women

  • Tine TholstrupAffiliated withDepartment of Human Nutrition, Faculty of Life Sciences, Copenhagen University Email author 
  • , Kim-Tiu TengAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya
  • , Marianne RaffAffiliated withDepartment of Human Nutrition, Faculty of Life Sciences, Copenhagen University

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Contrary to other long chain saturated fatty acids (SFA), fats high in stearic acid do not raise plasma cholesterol concentrations, however, a slight elevation in inflammatory markers, plasma fibrinogen and interleukin-6 (IL-6), has been observed in the fasting state. The effect of stearic acid on inflammation in the postprandial state has not yet been reported. We conducted a single blind crossover, randomized, postprandial study to compare the effects of a fat load of cocoa butter high in stearic acid and olive oil in ten healthy women. The test meals contained 1 g of fat per kg body weight (mean 62 g). Blood samples were collected at 0 (fasting), 4 and 6 h. Both diets resulted in a significant increase in serum triacylglycerol (TAG) concentration over time (P = 0.003) and a decrease in serum IL-6 concentration after 4 h followed by an increase to post absorptive values after 6 h (P < 0.001); whereas serum high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) concentration was not affected. There was no difference between diets in effects on serum TAG, hsCRP and IL-6 concentrations and no association between postprandial lipemia and inflammatory markers. High intake of dietary fats increase postprandial serum TAG, however, may not affect inflammatory markers postprandially. Thus, fat rich in stearic acid does not seem to increase postprandial inflammation.


Postprandial lipemia C-reactive protein Interleukin-6 Stearic acid Triacylglycerol