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Cholesterol and Plants
E. J. Behrman and Venkat Gopalan
Department of Biochemistry, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210-1292
There is a widespread belief among the public and even among chemists that plants do not contain cholesterol.
This error is the result (in part) of the fact that plants generally contain only small quantities of cholesterol and that analytical methods for the detection of cholesterol in this range were not well developed until recently (1).
Another reason has to do with the legalities of food labeling that allow small quantities of cholesterol in foods to be called zero (2).
The fact is that cholesterol is widespread in the plant kingdom although other related sterols, such as Î²-sitosterol (henceforth referred to as sitosterol), generally occur in larger quantities.
Source Cholesterol/(mg/kg-1) Reference Palm oil 20 14 Palm oil 16 1 Palm kernel 17 1 Coconut oil 14 1 Cottonseed oil 45 1 Soybean oil 29 1 Corn oil 55 1 Peanut oil 24 1 Sunflower seed oil 14 1 Canola oil 53 1 Avocado oil <30 15 Olive oil 0.5â€“2 16,17 Sesame oil ca. 1 16,17
According to FDA rules,
cholesterol quantities less than 2 mgserving may be labeled
as zero (19).
Before you back on the Atkins Diet notice that the units in the chart above are for milligrams per pound of oil. To put those figures into perspective a large egg has about 211 milligrams of cholesterol.
- None Found