2008 Volume 215 Issue 3 Pages 219-226
Repeated heating of soy oil may promote lipid peroxidation. Oxidized unsaturated fatty acids may contribute to the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, especially in estrogen-deficient states. This study was performed to explore the deleterious effects of repeatedly heated soy oil on the development of atherosclerosis using ovariectomized rats, which represent an estrogen-deficient state. Twenty-four female Sprague-Dawley rats were ovariectomized and were divided equally into four groups. The control group was fed with 2% cholesterol diet without any oil. The three treatment groups each received 2% cholesterol diet fortified with fresh, once-heated or five-times-heated (repeatedly heated) soy oil, respectively. Serum thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), lipid profile and homocysteine levels were measured prior to ovariectomy and at the end of four months. Ovariectomized rats treated with repeatedly heated soy oil showed significant increases in lipid peroxidation and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) levels. Treatment with once-heated or repeatedly heated soy oil caused a significant increase in total cholesterol, while fresh soy oil caused significant reduction in homocysteine level as compared to other groups. Repeatedly heated soy oil caused significant increases in TBARS and LDL as compared to fresh oil. The higher level of homocysteine in the ovariectomized rats fed with repeatedly heated oil, as compared to those fed with fresh oil, also suggests the repeatedly heated oil contributes to the development of atherosclerosis. Importantly, the protective effect of the soy oil may be lost once it was being repeatedly heated. In conclusion, the consumption of repeatedly heated oil may predispose to atherosclerosis in estrogen-deficient states.