“Our results indicate that hydroxytyrosol may be a key part of the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil. We have demonstrated that this compound may offer protection against oxidative stress and detrimental fatty acid composition in the liver, heart and brain caused by a high-fat diet,” Valenzuela noted.
For the study, published in the journal Lipids in Health and Disease, the team fed four groups of 12-14 mice on either a high-fat diet (60 per cent fat) or a control diet (10 per cent fat), with or without supplementation of 5mg hydroxytyrosol per kg body weight, administered orally, for a 12 week period.
The results revealed that adding a relatively low dose of hydroxytyrosol to the diet was able to reverse oxidative stress which is linked to fatty liver disease.
In addition, hydroxytyrosol also lowered the increase in levels of low-density lipoprotein or the bad cholestrol.
However, these findings needs to be established in humans, the researchers said.
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