Plant sterol fortified soy milk shows inflammation benefits: Singapore study

By Gary Scattergood

- Last updated on GMT

Soy milk is a popular drink in many South East Asian countries. ©iStock
Soy milk is a popular drink in many South East Asian countries. ©iStock

Related tags Inflammation functional beverage beverage

Soy milk fortified with combination of plant sterols can alleviate lipid peroxidation and inflammation, a Singapore clinical trial has concluded.

Academics at Nanyang Polytechnic’s devised a randomised, double blind, placebo-controlled and crossover study to measure the effects of plant sterol enriched soy milk on inflammation, oxidative status, 5-lipoxygenase (5-LO), 12-lipoxygenase (12-LO) and myeloperoxidase (MPO) activities in healthy adults.

Writing in the journal Free Radical Research,​ they stated there is currently limited in vivo human data regarding the simultaneous measurement of effects, after acute and prolonged exposure to plant sterol-enriched food product, on blood lipid profile, inflammation and oxidative status in healthy adults.

“There is also limited in vivo human data regarding the effects of plant sterols on 5-LO, 12-LO and MPO activities,”​ they added.

Therefore 18 healthy participants with a mean body mass index of 22.8 received two soy milk (20g) treatments daily. One was a placebo and one contained 2.0g free plant sterols  (β-sitosterol, 55%; campesterol, 29% and stigmasterol, 23%).

Inflammatory events

The research team, led by Wai Mun Loke found that consumption of plant-sterol fortified soy milk helped alleviate lipid peroxidation and inflammatory events.

“Myeloperoxidase activity, serum lipid hydroperoxides, plasma and urinary F2-isoprostanes, plasma and urinary leukotriene B4, and plasma high-sensitivity c-reactive protein concentrations were significantly reduced, while circulating lipoxin A4 concentrations were significantly elevated after 4-week plant sterols treatment.

“Plant sterols treatment also decreased plasma leukotriene B4 and increased plasma lipoxin A4 concentrations acutely," ​they wrote.

Total plant sterols, β-sitosterol, campesterol and stigmasterol concentrations were significantly elevated after four-week treatments compared to the pre-treatment concentrations.

“Our results suggest that dietary plant sterols, in the combination used, can alleviate lipid peroxidation and inflammatory events in vivo,”​ they added.

“These effects are possibly exerted via the modulation of myeloperoxidase, 5-lipoxygenase and 12-lipoxygenase activities.”

“Further studies, regardless of in vitro or in vivo, are required to elucidate the mechanisms by which these molecules exert these biological activities.”


Source: Free Radical Research

“Plant sterol-enriched soy milk consumption modulates 5-lipoxygenase, 12-lipoxygenase and myeloperoxidase activities in healthy adults – A randomised controlled trial”

Authors: Wai Mun Loke, et al.

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