Skip to main content

Essential fatty acids as functional components of foods- a review

Abstract

During the recent decades, awareness towards the role of essential fatty acids in human health and disease prevention has been unremittingly increasing among people. Fish, fish oils and some vegetable oils are rich sources of essential fatty acids. Many studies have positively correlated essential fatty acids with reduction of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, infant development, cancer prevention, optimal brain and vision functioning, arthritis, hypertension, diabetes mellitus and neurological/neuropsychiatric disorders. Beneficial effects may be mediated through several different mechanisms, including alteration in cell membrane composition, gene expression or eicosanoid production. However, the mechanisms whereby essential fatty acids affect gene expression are complex and involve multiple processes. Further understanding of the molecular aspects of essential fatty acids will be the key to devising novel approaches to the treatment and prevention of many diseases.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig 6
Fig 7

References

  • Adams CM, Reitz J, De Brabander JK, Feramisco JD, Li L, Brown MS, Goldstein JL (2004) Cholesterol and 25-hydroxycholesterol inhibit activation of SREBPs by different mechanisms, both involving SCAP and Insigs. J Biol Chem 279:52772–52780

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Augustsson K, Michaud DS, Rimm EB, Leitzmann MF, Stampfer MJ, Willett WC, Giovannucci E (2003) A prospective study of intake of fish and marine fatty acids and prostate cancer. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 12:64–67

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Azona JO, Schang MJ, Garcia PT, Gallinger C, Ricardo AJ, Coates W (2008) Omega-3 enriched broiler meat: the influence of dietary alpha-linolenic omega-3 fatty acid sources on growth, performance and meat fatty acid composition. Can J Anim Sci 88:257–269

    Google Scholar 

  • Balk EM, Lichtenstein AH, Chung M, Kupelnick B, Chew M, Lau J (2006) Effects of omega-3 fatty acids on serum markers of cardiovascular disease risk: a systematic review. Atherosclerosis 189:19–30

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Berquin IM, Min Y, Wu R, Wu J, Perry D, Cline JM, Thomas MJ, Thornburg T, Kulik G, Smith A, Edwards IJ, D’Agostino R, Zhang H, Wu H, Kang JX, Yong Q (2007) Modulation of prostate cancer genetic risk by omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. J Clin Invest 117:1866–1875

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Birch EE, Garfield S, Hoffman DR, Uauy R, Birch DG (2000) A randomized controlled trial of early dietary supply of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids and mental development in term infants. Dev Med Child Neurol 42:174–181

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Bousquet M, Saint-Pierre M, Julien C, Salem N, Cicchetti F, Calon F (2008) Beneficial effects of dietary omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids on toxin induced neuronal degeneration in an animal model of Parkinson’s disease. FASEB J 22:1213–1225

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Breckenridge WC, Gombos G, Morgan IG (1972) The lipid composition of adult rat brain synaptosomal plasma membranes. Biochim Biophys Acta 266:695–707

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Brenna JT (2002) Efficiency of conversion of alpha-linolenic acid to long chain n-3 fatty acids in man. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care 5:127–132

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Brunton S, Collins N (2007) Differentiating prescription omega-3-acid ethyl esters (P-OM3) from dietary-supplement omega-3 fatty acids. Curr Med Res Opin 23:1139–1145

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Burdge GC, Calder PC (2005) Conversion of alpha linolenic acid to longer-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in human adults. Reprod Nutr Dev 45:581–597

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Burdge GC, Jones AE, Wootton SA (2002) Eicosapentaenoic and docosapentaenoic acids are the principle products of alpha-linolenic acid metabolism in young men. Br J Nutr 88:355–363

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Cagen LM, Deng X, Wilcox HG, Park EA, Raghow R, Elam MB (2005) Insulin activates the rat sterol-regulatory-element-binding protein Ic (SREBP-Ic) promoter through the combinatorial actions of SREBP, LXR, Sp-1 and NG-Y cis-acting elements. Biochem J 385:207–216

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Calder PC (2004) n-3 fatty acids and cardiovascular disease: evidence explained and mechanisms explored. Clin Sci (London) 107:1–11

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Calviello G, Serini S, Piccioni E (2007) n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and the prevention of colorectal cancer: molecular mechanisms involved. Curr Med Chem 14:3059–3069

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Caygill CP, Hill MJ (1995) Fish, n-3 fatty acids and human colorectal and breast cancer mortality. Eur J Cancer Prev 4:329–332

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Chan JK, McDonald BE, Gerrard JM, Bruce VM, Weaver BJ, Holub BJ (1993) Effects of dietary alpha-linolenic acid and its ratio to linoleic acid on platelet and plasma fatty acids and thrombogenesis. Lipids 28:811–817

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Chen ZY, Pelletier G, Hollywood R, Ratnayake WM (1995) Trans fatty acid isomers in Canadian human milk. Lipids 30:15–21

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Chen H, Li D, Roberts GJ, Saldeen T, Mehta JL (2003) Eicosapentaenoic acid inhibits hypoxia-reoxygenation-induced injury by attenuating upregulation of MMP-1 in adult rat myocytes. Cardiovasc Res 59:7–13

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Chen YQ, Edwards IJ, Kridel SJ, Thornburg T, Berquin IM (2007) Dietary fat–gene interaction in cancer. Cancer Metastasis Rev 26:535–551

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Colomer R, Moreno-Nogueira JM, Garcia-Luna PP, Garcia-Peris P, Garcia-de-Lorenzo A, Zarazaga A, Quecedo L, del Llano J, Usan L, Casimiro C (2007) N-3 fatty acids, cancer and cachexia: a systematic review of the literature. Br J Nutr 97:823–831

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Crawford MA (1993) The role of essential fatty acids in neural development: implications for perinatal nutrition. Am J Clin Nutr 57:703S–709S

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Das UN (2000) Beneficial actions of polyunsaturated fatty acids in cardiovascular diseases: but, how and why? Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fat Acids 63:351–362

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Das L, Bhaumik E, Raychaudhuri U, Chakraborty R (2011) Role of nutraceuticals in human health. J Food Sci Technol. doi:10.1007/s13197-011-0269-4

  • De Deckere EA (1999) Possible beneficial effect of fish and fish n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in breast and colorectal cancer. Eur J Cancer Prev 8:213–221

    Google Scholar 

  • Deckelbaum RJ, Worgall TS, Seo T (2006) n-3 fatty acids and gene expression. Am J Clin Nutr 83:1520S–1525S

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Defilippis AP, Blaha MJ, Jacobson TA (2010) Omega-3 fatty acids for cardiovascular disease prevention. Curr Treat Options Cardiovasc Med 12:365–380

    Google Scholar 

  • Dhaka V, Gulia N, Ahlawat KS, Khatkar BS (2011) Trans-fats sources, health risks and alternative approach—a review. J Sci Food Technol 48:534–541

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Diamond IR, Sterescu A, Pencharz PB, Wales PW (2008) The rationale for the use of parenteral omega-3 lipids in children with short bowel syndrome and liver disease. Pediatr Surg Int 24:773–778

    Google Scholar 

  • Dimri M, Bommi PV, Sahasrabuddhe AA, Khandekar JD, Dimri GP (2010) Dietary omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids suppress expression of EZH2 in breast cancer cells. Carcinogenesis 31:489–495

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Dyerberg J, Bang HO, Hjorne N (1975) Fatty acid composition of the plasma lipids in Greenland Eskimos. Am J Clin Nutr 28:958–966

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Eckert GP, Franke C, Noldner M, Rau O, Wurglics M, Schubert-Zsilavecz M, Muller WE (2010) Plant derived omega-3-fatty acids protect mitochondrial function in the brain. Pharmacol Res 61:234–241

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Elias SL, Innis SM (2001) Infant plasma. Trans, n-6 and n-3 fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acids are related to maternal plasma fatty acids, length of gestation and birth weight and length. Am J Clin Nutr 73:807–814

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Emken EA, Adlof RO, Gulley RM (1994) Dietary linolenic acid influences desaturation and acylation of deuterium-labeled linoleic and linolenic acids in young adult males. Biochim Biophys Acta 1213:277–288

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Erkkila AT, Lichtenstein AH, Mozaffarian D, Herrington DM (2004) Fish intake is associated with a reduced progression of coronary artery atherosclerosis in postmenopausal women with coronary artery disease. Am J Clin Nutr 80:626–632

    Google Scholar 

  • Fan YY, Chapkin RS (1998) Importance of dietary gamma-linolenic acid in human health and nutrition. J Nutr 128:1411–1414

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Fortin PR, Lew RA, Liang MH, Wright EA, Beckett LA, Chalmers TC, Sperling RI (1995) Validation of a meta analysis: the effects of fish oil in rheumatoid arthritis. J Clin Epidemiol 48:1379–1390

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Francois CA, Connor SL, Bolewicz LC, Connor WE (2003) Supplementing lactating women with flaxseed oil does not increase docosahexaenoic acid in their milk. Am J Clin Nutr 77:226–233

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Fukumoto Y, Deguchi JO, Libby P, Rabkin-Aikawa E, Sakata Y, Chin MT, Hill CC, Lawler PR, Varo N, Schoen FY, Krane SM, Aikawa M (2004) Genetically determined resistance to collagenase action augments interstitial collagen accumulation in atherosclerotic plaques. Circulation 110:1953–1959

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Funk CD (2001) Prostaglandins and leukotrienes: advances in eicosanoid biology. Science 294:1871–1875

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Guivernau M, Meza N, Bajra P, Roman O (1994) Clinical and experimental study on the long-term effect of dietary gamma-linolenic acid on plasma lipids, platelet aggregation, thromboxane formation, and prostacyclin production. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fat Acids 51:311–316

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Heinrichs SC (2010) Dietary ω-3 fatty acid supplementation for optimizing neuronal structure and function. Mol Nutr Food Res 54:447–456

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Holub BJ (2002) Omega-3 fatty acids in cardiovascular care. Can Med Assoc J 166:608–615

    Google Scholar 

  • Horrobin DF (1990) Gamma-linolenic acid. Rev Contemp Pharmacother 1:1–41

    Google Scholar 

  • Hoy CE, Holmer G, Kaur N, Byrjalsen I, Kirstein D (1983) Acyl group distribution tissue lipids of rats fed evening primrose oil (γ-linolenic plus linoleic acid) or soybean oil (α-linolenic plus linoleic acid). Lipids 18:760–771

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Hunter JE (1990) n-3 fatty acids from vegetable oils. Am J Clin Nutr 51:809–814

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Hussein N, Ah-Sing E, Wilkinson P, Leach C, Griffin BA, Millward DJ (2005) Long-chain conversion of [13C] linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid in response to marked changes in their dietary intake in men. J Lipid Res 46:269–280

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Johnson MM, Swan DD, Surettte ME, Stegner J, Chilton T, Fonteh AN, Chilton FH (1997) Dietary supplementation with gamma-linolenic acid alters fatty acid content and eicosanoid production in healthy humans. J Nutr 127:1435–1444

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Johnson RA, Hamilton JA, Worgall TS, Deckelbaum RJ (2003) Free fatty acids modulate intermembrane trafficking of cholesterol by increasing lipid mobilities: novel 13C NMR analyses of free cholesterol partitioning. Biochemistry 42:1637–1645

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Kang JX, Leaf A (2000) Prevention of fatal cardiac arrhythmias by polyunsaturated fatty acids. Am J Clin Nutr 71:202S–207S

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Karlstad MD, DeMichele SJ, Leathem WD, Peterson MB (1993) Effect of intravenous lipid emulsions enriched with gamma-linolenic acid on plasma n-6 fatty acids and prostaglandin biosynthesis after burn and endotoxin injury in rats. Crit Care Med 21:1740–1749

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Kidd PM (2007) Omega-3 DHA and EPA for cognition, behaviour and moods: clinical findings and structural functional synergies with cell membrane phospholipids. Altern Med Rev 12:207–227

    Google Scholar 

  • Kiecolt-Glaser JK (2010) Stress, food, and inflammation: psychoneuroimmunology and nutrition at the cutting edge. Psychosom Med 72:365–369

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Kinsella JE (1990) Sources of omega-3 fatty acids in human diets. In: Lees RS, Karel M (eds) Omega-3 fatty acids in health and disease. Marcel Dekker, New York, pp 157–200

    Google Scholar 

  • Kockmann V, Spielmann D, Traitler H, Lagarde M (1989) Inhibitory effect of Stearidonic acid (18: 4 n-3) on platelet aggregation and arachidonate oxygenation. Lipids 24:1004–1007

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Kris-Etherton P, Eckel RH, Howard BV, Jeor SS, Bazzarre TL (2001) Lyon diet heart study. Benefits of a mediterranean—style national cholesterol education program/American heart association step 1 dietary pattern on cardio vascular disease. Circulation 103:1823–1825

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Kromann N, Green A (1980) Epidemiological studies in the Upenavik district, Greenland. Acta Med Scand 208:401–406

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Kummerow FA, Zhou Q, Mahfouz MM, Smiricky MR, Grieshop CM, Schaeffer DJ (2004) Trans fatty acids in hydrogenated fat inhibited the synthesis of the polyunsaturated fatty acids in the phospholipid of arterial cells. Life Sci 74:2707–2723

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Lawson LD, Hughes BG (1988) Triacylglycerol structure of plant and fungal oils containing γ-linolenic acid. Lipids 23:313–317

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Leaf A, Xiao YF, Kang JX, Billman GE (2003) Prevention of sudden cardiac deaths by n-polyunsaturated fatty acids. Pharmacol Ther 98:355–377

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Li AC, Binder CJ, Gutierrez A, Brown KK, Plotkin CR, Pattison JW, Valledor AF, Davis RA, Willson TM, Witztum JL, Palinski W, Glass CK (2004) Differential inhibition of macrophage foam-cell formation and atherosclerosis in mice by PPARalpha, beta/delta, and gamma. J Clin Invest 114:1564–1576

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Litman BJ, Niu SL, Polozova A, Mitchell DC (2001) The role of docosahexaenoic acid containing phospholipids in modulating G protein-coupled signaling pathways: visual transduction. J Mol Neurosci 16:237–242

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Mita T, Watada H, Ogihara T, Nomiyama T, Ogawa O, Kinoshita J, Shimizu T, Hirose T, Tanaka Y, Kawamori R (2007) Eicosapentaenoic acid reduces the progression of carotid intima-media thickness in patients with type 2-diabetes. Atherosclerosis 191:162–167

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Mozaffarian D, Rimm EB (2006) Fish intake, contaminants and human health: evaluating the risks and the benefits. J Am Med Assoc 296:1885–1899

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Mozaffarian D, Longstreth WT, Lemaitre RN, Manolio TA, Kuller LH, Burke GL, Siscovick DS (2005) Fish consumption and stroke risk in elderly individuals: the cardiovascular health study. Arch Intern Med 165:200–206

    Google Scholar 

  • Ohara K (2007) The n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid/dopamine hypothesis of schizophrenia. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry 31:469–474

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Ou J, Tu H, Shan B, Luk A, Debose-Boyd RA, Bashmakov Y, Goldstein JL, Brown MS (2001) Unsaturated fatty acids inhibit transcription of the sterol regulatory element-binding protein-1c (SREBP-1c) gene by antagonizing ligand-dependent activation of the LXR. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 98:6027–6032

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Pala V, Krogh V, Muti P, Chajes V, Riboli E, Micheli A, Saadatian M, Sieri S, Berrino F (2001) Erythrocyte membrane fatty acids and subsequent breast cancer: a prospective Italian Study. J Natl Cancer Inst 93:1088–1095

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Pawlosky RJ, Hibbeln JR, Novotny JA, Salem N (2001) Physiological compartmental analysis of alpha-linolenic acid metabolism in adult humans. J Lipid Res 42:1257–1265

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Pawlosky RJ, Hibbeln JR, Lin Y, Goodson S, Riggs P, Sebring N, Brown GL, Salem N (2003) Effect of beef- and fish-based diets on the kinetics of n-3 fatty acid metabolism in human subjects. Am J Clin Nutr 77:565–572

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Petrik MB, McEntee MF, Johnson BT, Obukowicz MG, Whelan J (2000) Highly unsaturated (n-3) fatty acids, but not alpha—linolenic, conjugated linoleic or gamma linolenic acids, reduce tumorigenesis in Apc (Min/+) mice. J Nutr 130:2434–2443

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Phinney SD, Odin RS, Johnson SB, Holman RT (1990) Reduced arachidonate in serum phospholipids and cholesteryl esters associated with vegetarian diets in humans. Am J Clin Nutr 51:385–392

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Prescott S (1984) The effect of eicosapentaenoic acid on leukotriene B production by human neutrophils. J Biol Chem 259:7615–7621

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Qi K, Seo T, Al-Haideri M, Worgall TS, Vogel T, Carpentier YA, Deckelbaum RJ (2002) Omega-3 triglycerides modify blood clearance and tissue targeting pathways of lipid emulsions. Biochemistry 41:3119–3127

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Qi K, Al-Haideri M, Seo T, Carpentier YA, Deckelbaum RJ (2003) Effects of particle size on blood clearance and tissue uptake of lipid emulsions with different triglyceride compositions. J Parenter Enteral Nutr 27:58–64

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Reisbick S, Neuringer M, Gohl E, Wald R, Anderson GJ (1997) Visual attention in infant monkeys: effects of dietary fatty acids and age. Dev Psychol 33:387–395

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Reisman J, Schachter HM, Dales RE, Tran K, Kourad K, Barnes D, Sampson M, Morrison A, Gaboury I, Blackman J (2006) Treating asthma with omega-3 fatty acids: where is the evidence? A systematic review. BMC Complement Altern Med 6:26–34

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Rosenwald AG, Machamer CE, Pagano RE (1992) Effects of a sphingolipid synthesis inhibitor on membrane transport through the secretory pathway. Biochemistry 31:3581–3590

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Ryan AM, Reynolds JV, Healy L, Byrne M, Moore J, Brannelly N, McHugh A, McCormack D, Flood P (2009) Enteral nutrition enriched with eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) preserves lean body mass following esophageal cancer surgery: results of a double-blinded randomized controlled trial. Ann Surg 249:353–363

    Google Scholar 

  • SanGiovanni JP, Chew EY (2005) The role of omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in health and disease of the retina. Prog Retin Eye Res 24:87–138

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Seo T, Blaner WS, Deckelbaum RJ (2005) N-3 fatty acids: molecular approaches to optimal biological outcomes. Curr Opin Lipidol 16:11–18

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Shearer GC, Harris WS, Pedersen TL, Newman JH (2010) Detection of omega-3 oxylipins in human plasma and response to treatment with omega-3 and ethyl esters. J Lipid Res 51:2074–2081

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Simopoulos AP (1996) Part I: metabolic effects of omega-3 fatty acids and essentiality. In: Spiller GA (ed) Handbook of lipids in human nutrition. CRC, Boca Raton, pp 51–73

    Google Scholar 

  • Song C, Zhao S (2007) Omega-3 fatty acid eicosapentaenoic acid. A new treatment for psychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases: a review of clinical investigations. Expert Opin Investig Drugs 16:1627–1638

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Stilwell W, Wassall SR (2003) Docosahexaenoic acid: membrane properties of a unique fatty acid. Chem Phys Lipids 126:1–27

    Google Scholar 

  • Su KP, Huang SY, Chiu CC, Shen WW (2003) Omega-3 fatty acids in major depressive disorder. A preliminary double-blind, placebo-controlled trials. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol 13:267–271

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Svennerholm L (1968) Distribution and fatty acid composition of phosphoglycerides in normal human brain. J Lipid Res 9:570–579

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Tilley L, Coffman TM, Koller BH (2001) Mixed messages: modulation of inflammation and immune responses by prostaglandins and thromboxanes. J Clin Invest 108:15–23

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Valsta LM, Salminen I, Aro A, Mutanen M (1996) Alpha-linolenic acid in rapeseed oil partly compensates for the effect of fish restriction on plasma long chain n-3 fatty acids. Eur J Clin Nutr 50:229–235

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Vanschoonbeek K, de Maat MP, Heemskerk JW (2003) Fish oil consumption and reduction of arterial disease. J Nutr 133:657–660

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • vonSchacky C, Harris WS (2007) Cardiovascular benefits of omega-3 fatty acids. Cardiovasc Res 73:310–315

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Wall R, Ross RP, Fitzgerald GF, Stanton C (2010) Fatty acids from fish: the anti-inflammatory potential of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids. Nutr Rev 68:280–289

    Google Scholar 

  • Wang C, Harris WS, Chung M, Lichtenstein AH, Balk EM, Kupelnick B, Jordan HS, Lau J (2006) n-3 fatty acids from fish oil supplements, but not α-linolenic acid, benefit cardiovascular disease outcomes in primary- and secondary-prevention studies, a systematic review. Am J Clin Nutr 84:5–17

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Whelan J, Rust C (2006) Innovative dietary sources of N-3 fatty acids. Annu Rev Nutr 26:75–100

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Wijendran V, Hayes KC (2004) Dietary n-6 and n-3 fatty acid balance and cardiovascular health. Annu Rev Nutr 24:597–615

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Worgall TS, Sturley SL, Seo T, Osborne TF, Deckelbaum RJ (1998) Polyunsaturated fatty acids decrease expression of promoters with sterol regulatory elements by decreasing levels of mature sterol regulatory element-binding protein. J Biol Chem 273:25537–25540

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Worgall TS, Johnson RA, Seo T, Gierens H, Deckelbaum RJ (2002) Unsaturated fatty acid-mediated decreases in sterol regulatory element-mediated gene transcription are linked to cellular sphingolipid metabolism. J Biol Chem 277:3878–3885

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Worgall TS, Juliano RA, Seo T, Deckelbaum RJ (2004) Ceramide synthesis correlates with the posttranscriptional regulation of the sterol-regulatory element-binding protein. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 24:943–948

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Xu J, Cho H, O’Malley S, Park JH, Clarke SD (2002) Dietary polyunsaturated fats regulate rat liver sterol regulatory element binding proteins-I and -2 in three distinct stages and by different mechanisms. J Nutr 132:3333–3339

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Yang T, Espenshade PJ, Wright ME, Yabe D, Gong Y, Aebersold R, Goldstein JL, Brown MS (2002) Crucial step in cholesterol homeostasis: sterols promote binding of SCAP to INSIG-1, a membrane protein that facilitates retention of SREBPs in ER. Cell 110:489–500

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Yokoyama M, Origasa H, Matsuzaki M, Matsuzawa Y, Saito Y, Ishikawa Y, Oikawa S, Sasaki J, Hishida S, Itakura H, Kita T, Kitabatake A, Nakaya N, Sakata T, Shimada K, Shirato K (2007) Effects of eicosapentaenoic acid on major coronary events in hypercholesterolemic patients (JELIS): a randomised open-label, blinded end-point analysis. Lancet 369:1090–1098

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Yoshikawa T, Ide T, Shimano H, Yahagi N, Amemiya-Kudo M, Matsuzaka T, Yatoh S, Kitamine T, Okazaki H, Tamura Y, Sekiya M, Takahashi A, Hasty AH, Sato R, Sone H, Osuga J, Ishibashi S, Yamada N (2003) Cross-talk between peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) alpha and Liver X receptor (LXR) in nutritional regulation of fatty acid metabolism. I. PPARs suppress sterol regulatory element binding protein-Ic promoter through inhibition of LXR signaling. Mol Endocrinol 17:1240–1254

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Youdim KA, Martin A, Joseph JA (2000) Essential fatty acids and the brain: possible health Implications. Int J Dev Neurosci 18:383–399

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Zambon D, Sabate J, Munoz S, Campero B, Casals E, Merlos M, Laguna JC, Ros E (2000) Substituting Walnuts for monounsaturated fat improves the serum lipid profile of hypercholesterolemic men and women. A randomized crossover trial. Ann Intern Med 132:538–546

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Zulfakar MH, Edwards M, Heard CM (2007) Is there a role for topically delivered eicosapentaenoic acid in the treatment of psoriasis? Eur J Dermatol 17:284–291

    CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Anil K. Gupta.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Kaur, N., Chugh, V. & Gupta, A.K. Essential fatty acids as functional components of foods- a review. J Food Sci Technol 51, 2289–2303 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13197-012-0677-0

Download citation

  • Revised:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13197-012-0677-0

Keywords

  • Essential fatty acids
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • α-Linolenic acid
  • Docosapentaenoic acid
  • Functional foods