- WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Even a simple breakfast of toast and margarine may
be too fatty for the body to handle and it could be there are no ``good''
fats in a high-fat diet, Dutch researchers said Tuesday.
- A single high-fat meal can cause elevations
in a blood-clotting factor known as Factor VIIa, which has been associated
with heart attacks, they wrote in a report in the Journal of the American
Heart Association. Louise Mennen and colleagues at the Agricultural University
in Wageningen, Netherlands, said it did not matter what kinds of fats people
ate -- all fat was bad.
- ``The results of our trial support the
view that the factor VIIa response to a high dietary fat intake is independent
of the type of fat,'' Mennen said in a statement.
- The researchers studied 91 elderly women
to identify dietary fats that might raise the risk of heart disease. The
women ate four breakfasts, each with 50 percent of calories from fat but
containing different fatty acids. The meals included a bun, margarine,
jam, cake and orange juice. One breakfast contained palmitic acid, a highly
saturated animal fat, one had stearic acid, found in beef and cocoa butter,
and the other two had differing levels of linoleic and linolenic acid,
found in corn, canola and other vegetable oils. The control breakfast used
for comparison was low-fat and included a low-fat bun and yogurt.
- Levels of factor VIIa rose significantly
in those who ate the high-fat breakfasts. In contrast, levels decreased
in those who ate the control diet. ``There were no differences among the
fat-rich diets,'' Mennen said.
- It was not yet clear if factor VIIa was
a direct cause of heart attacks, she said. ``This study adds another reason
to try to adhere to the current recommendations of a low-fat diet,'' Alice
Lichtenstein of Tufts University's Human Nutrition Research Center said
in a telephone interview. The American Heart Association recommends that
the average person should limit total fat intake to no more than 30 percent
of total calories.
- Some studies have indicated that monounsaturated
fats such as olive oil are better for the heart than animal fats or most
vegetable fats. Mennen's team did not test olive oil in their study. ^REUTERS@