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Polyunsaturated Oil Healthier Option, Weight Gain Study Suggests

Update Date: Oct 16, 2014 10:35 AM EDT

Short-term modest weight gains in healthy, normal weight young adults was linked to more bad cholesterol levels in those who ate muffins cooked using saturated oil, according to a new study. 

The study also found that individuals who ate muffins made with polyunsaturated oils had improved blood cholesterol profiles. 

Researches conducted a seven-week study in 39 adults who added three muffins each day made with either unsaturated sunflower or saturated palm oil. The study was planned in a way that participants would gain about 3 percent of their body weight during the study. 

Researchers found that those who ate the unsaturated fat muffins tended to have lower low-density lipoproteins (LDL-bad cholesterol) levels. 

"Even in early adulthood, it is important to avoid high-calorie foods and weight gain, but also it is important to consume sufficient amounts of polyunsaturated fats from non-hydrogenated vegetable oils," said Ulf Risérus, M.D., Ph.D., principal investigator and associate professor of Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism at Uppsala University, in Uppsala, Sweden, in the press release. "The lowering of the cholesterol/HDL cholesterol ratio by polyunsaturated fat is of special interest because recent large studies have shown this ratio seems to predict heart disease risk even better than LDL levels alone."

The study has been published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.  

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