Carotenoid absorption from salad and salsa by humans is enhanced by the addition of avocado or avocado oil

Nuray Z. Unlu, Torsten Bohn, Steven K. Clinton, Steven J. Schwartz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

219 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Dietary lipids are hypothesized to be an important factor for carotenoid bioavailability. However, most carotenoid-rich fruits and vegetables are low in lipids. The objective of this study was to assess whether the addition of avocado fruit as a lipid source enhances carotenoid absorption in humans. Healthy subjects (n = 11/ study) were recruited for 2 crossover, postprandial studies. The effect of avocado addition (150 g) to salsa on lycopene and β-carotene absorption was examined in Study 1, and the absorption of lutein, α-carotene, and β-carotene from salad in Study 2. Furthermore, the effects of avocado dose (75 vs. 150 g containing 12 vs. 24 g lipid, respectively) and of lipid source (avocado fruit vs. avocado oil) on carotenoid absorption were examined in Study 2. Intact carotenoids were quantified in the plasma triacylglycerol-rich lipoprotein (TRL) fraction during the 9.5 h after consumption of the test meal and expressed as baseline-corrected area under the concentration-vs.-time curve (AUC). The addition of avocado to salsa enhanced lycopene and β-carotene absorption (P < 0.003), resulting in 4.4 and 2.6 times the mean AUC after intake of avocado-free salsa, respectively. In Study 2, supplementing 150 g avocado or 24 g avocado oil to salad similarly enhanced α-carotene, β-carotene, and lutein absorption (P < 0.01), resulting in 7.2, 15.3, and 5.1 times the mean AUC after intake of avocado-free salad, respectively (150 g avocado). Neither the avocado dose nor the lipid source affected carotenoid absorption. In conclusion, adding avocado fruit can significantly enhance carotenoid absorption from salad and salsa, which is attributed primarily to the lipids present in avocado.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)431-436
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Volume135
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2005
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Avocados
  • Carotenoids
  • Humans
  • Postprandial absorption
  • Triacyglycerol-rich lipoproteins

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Carotenoid absorption from salad and salsa by humans is enhanced by the addition of avocado or avocado oil'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this