Scientists at Columbia University have discovered why foods high in saturated fatty acids contributes to premature death. About it reported in a press release on the website MedicalXpress.
Researchers have developed a new method of microscopy, which allowed us to track the fate of fatty acids after their absorption by cells. For this purpose, the hydrogen atoms in the molecules were replaced by heavy isotope — deuterium — without compromising the chemical properties of acids. Such labels can be detected using Raman light scattering, in which photons interacting with a substance to change its energy.
It turned out that saturated fatty acids included in the composition of the plasma membrane, which leads to “hardened” sites, which normally must be flexible. Built-in enzymes lose their properties. This is because tough and long chain acids bonded to molecules of lipids, contributing to dense Islands. The anomalous areas are growing, which eventually destroys the cell.
Unsaturated fatty acids, on the contrary, contribute to the dissolution of lipid plaques. This explains why containing food (fish, vegetable oil, nuts) has a beneficial effect on human health.
In July 2016 in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine published an article by scientists at Harvard University, who found that the consumption of large amounts of unsaturated fats contained in vegetable oils, is associated with a low probability of early death.