Trans fatty acids, insulin sensitivity and type 2 diabetes

Article English OPEN
Risérus, Ulf (2006)
  • Publisher: Co-Action Publishing
  • Journal: Food & Nutrition Research (issn: 1654-661X)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3402/fnr.v50i4.1597

Trans fatty acids (TFA) could affect cell membrane functions, and may therefore influence peripheral insulin sensitivity and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It is important to understand whether low amounts of TFA consumed during long periods may promote insulin resistance and have clinically relevant effects on diabetes risk. Data from controlled intervention studies examining the effects of TFA on insulin sensitivity and type 2 diabetes are reviewed. The results show no consistent effect of TFA on insulin sensitivity in lean healthy subjects, but there is some evidence that TFA could impair insulin sensitivity more than unsaturated fat in subjects with insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes. In particular, conjugated TFA, i.e. certain isomers of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), impair insulin sensitivity and could promote metabolic disorders. The effect of CLA (trans10cis12) on insulin sensitivity and lipid peroxidation is the most dramatic adverse effect described for a dietary fatty acid. CLA isomers are found in relatively low amounts, but long-term exposure may, in theory, have unwanted health effects. The mechanisms of CLA effects are still not completely understood, but may involve increased oxidative stress and inflammation, as well as endothelial dysfunction and direct down-regulating effects on transcription factors required for optimal insulin sensitivity. The inconsistent effect of TFA as a group may be due to methodological limitations (e.g. few studies, with short duration and small sample size) and differences between studies in design, and the type and amount of TFA used. Large controlled trials have been required to demonstrate adverse effects of saturated fat on insulin sensitivity, and similar efforts will be needed to clarify the effect of TFA on insulin sensitivity and diabetes risk. CLA isomers are a group of TFA with potentially adverse effects on glucose metabolism. There are no data to suggest that TFA in general impair insulin sensitivity in practice, compared with such an effect of the much more abundant saturated fatty acids. Keywords: CLA; controlled trial; inflammation; insulin resistance; insulin sensitivity; oxidative stress; trans fatty acids
  • References (16)
    16 references, page 1 of 2

    1. Salmeron J, Hu FB, Manson JE, Stampfer MJ, Colditz GA, Rimm EB, et al. Dietary fat intake and risk of type 2 diabetes in women. Am J Clin Nutr 2001; 73: 1019 26.

    2. Vessby B, Unsitupa M, Hermansen K, Riccardi G, Rivellese AA, Tapsell LC, et al. KANWU Study. Substituting dietary saturated for monounsaturated fat impairs insulin sensitivity in healthy men and women: the KANWU Study. Diabetologia 2001; 44: 312 9.

    3. Saravanan N, Haseeb A, Ehtesham NZ, Ghafoorunissa SA. Differential effects of dietary saturated and trans - fatty acids on expression of genes associated with insulin sensitivity in rat adipose tissue. Eur J Endocrinol 2005; 153: 159 65.

    4. Louheranta AM, Turpeinen AK, Vidgren HM, Schwab US, Uusitupa MI. A high-trans fatty acid diet and insulin sensitivity in young healthy women. Metabolism 1999; 48: 870 5.

    5. Lovejoy JC, Smith SR, Champagne CM, Most MM, Lefevre M, DeLany JP, et al. Effects of diets enriched in saturated (palmitic), monounsaturated (oleic), or trans (elaidic) fatty acids on insulin sensitivity and substrate oxidation in healthy adults. Diabetes Care 2002; 25: 1283 8.

    6. Lichtenstein AH, Erkkila AT, Lamarche B, Schwab US, Jalbert SM, Ausman LM. Influence of hydrogenated fat and butter on CVD risk factors: remnant-like particles, glucose and insulin, blood pressure and C-reactive protein. Atherosclerosis 2003; 171: 97 107.

    7. Christiansen E, Schnider S, Palmvig B, Tauber-Lassen E, Pedersen O. Intake of a diet high in trans monounsaturated fatty acids or saturated fatty acids. Effects on postprandial insulinemia and glycemia in obese patients with NIDDM. Diabetes Care 1997; 20: 881 7.

    8. Jung MY, Ha YL. Conjugated linoleic acid isomers in partially hydrogenated soybean oil obtained during nonselective and selective hydrogenation processes. J Agric Food Chem 1999; 47: 704 8.

    9. Rise´rus U, Arner P, Brismar K, Vessby B. Treatment with dietary trans 10cis 12 conjugated linoleic acid causes isomer-specific insulin resistance in obese men with the metabolic syndrome. Diabetes Care 2002; 25: 1516 21.

    10. Rise´rus U, Jovinge S, Basu S, Nordin Fredrikson G, .A¨ rnlo¨v J, Vessby B. Supplementation with conjugated linoleic acid causes isomer-dependent oxidative stress and elevated C-reactive protein: a potential link to fatty acid induced insulin resistance. Circulation 2002; 106: 1925 9.

  • Metrics
    No metrics available
Share - Bookmark