Post by CMF Newsman on Sept 10, 2007 10:33:28 GMT -5
SUNDAY, Sept. 9 (HealthDay News) -- How bad can it be to indulge in an occasional meal or snack loaded with saturated fat?
How about bad enough to diminish your body's ability to defend itself against heart disease.
A recent study by researchers at the University of Sydney in Australia found just that reaction after 14 trial participants, all healthy and between the ages of 18 and 40, ate just one piece of high-fat carrot cake and drank a milkshake.
That fat-laden feast compromised the ability of the participants' arteries to expand to increased blood flow, the researchers found. The sudden boost in what's known as saturated fat hampered the effects of so-called "good" cholesterol, the high-density lipoprotein or HDL, from doing its job -- to protect the inner lining of the arteries from inflammatory agents that promote the build-up of fatty plaques. It's this plaque that, over time, clogs blood vessels and causes heart disease.