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Lakshmanan Vennila*


Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) and their risk factors are major contributors to global morbidity and mortality. CVDs are associated with oxidative stress, leading to an increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), including superoxide radical, hydrogen peroxide, and hydroxyl radical or reduction of antioxidant defense system. These reactive species attack biomolecules such as lipids, DNA, and proteins enhancing the previously established tissue damage, as well as triggering cell death pathways. Hypercholesterolemia, high concentration of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), very low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (VLDLC), hypertriglyceridemia and low high-density lipoprotein (HDL-C) are also the independent risk factors for atherosclerotic CVDs. In this review, we propose a systematic approach to the cardioprotective effect of sesame oil that could offer a novel therapeutic opportunity against this oxidative tissue damage. Sesame seeds and oil have long been categorized as traditional health food in India and other East Asian countries and it is one of the major cooking oil used in human diet. Sesame oil supplementation decreased serum TC, LDL-C and lipid peroxidation, and increased antioxidant status in hyperlipidemic patients. Sesame oil, in comparison to other dietary oils such as ground nut and sunflower, also offers better protection against increased BP, hyperlipidemia and lipid peroxidation by increasing enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants. This review addresses the recent findings of cardioprotective potentials of sesame oil.

Keywords: cholesterol, blood pressure (BP), oxidative stress, antioxidants and hyperlipidemia

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