A comparison of hypocholesterolemic activity of β-sitosterol and β-sitostanol in rats

M. Sugano, H. Morioka, I. Ikeda

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The hypocholesterolemic activity of β-sitosterol and its hydrogenated product β-sitostanol (dihydrositosterol or stigmastanol) was compared in young male rats. When cholesterol was included in the diet, sitostanol consistently exhibited significantly greater hypocholesterolemic activity than sitosterol. There were no apparent differences in the effects of the sterol and the stanol on the concentration of liver cholesterol and triglyceride. Increases in plasma triglyceride due to feeding sitosterol were not observed with sitostanol. Incorporation of dietary sitostanol into plasma, liver and other tissues was always negligible, and thus this stanol was almost completely recovered in feces, while there was considerable deposition of sitosterol (mean fecal recovery being 85% to 92%). The increase in fecal output of dietary cholesterol was significantly greater with the stanol than with the sterol. There was no demonstrable negative effect on growth and weight of major visceral tissues in rats fed the sterol as well as the stanol. These observations together with those reported previously indicate that hydrogenation of phytosterols is a novel approach to enhance their hypocholesterolemic activities without influencing the relative safety of the initial sterols.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2011-2019
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1977
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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