Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death and disability in the United States and other countries. To reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, dietary saturated fat and cholesterol should be reduced.

This section of the workshop included a discussion of pragmatic issues associated with translating complex scientific information on the fat and fatty acid content of foods for the public; an overview of and a theoretical framework for cholesterol and lipoprotein metabolism; information on the role of cholesterol in the control of low-density-lipoprotein cholesterol (from animal studies); epidemiologic studies on the association between dietary fat and fatty acids and lipids and lipoproteins; the appropriate experimental design for fatty acid studies; and clinical studies evaluating the effects of individual fatty acids on plasma lipids and lipoproteins.

The evidence to date indicates that the individual fatty acids elicit distinctly different physiologic effects. There is still much to be learned about the effects of individual fatty acids on lipids and lipoproteins, their metabolic fate, and the responsible biological mechanisms.

PMID: 9129505

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