The Fats of Life: Essential Fatty Acids in Health and Disease

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Omega-3s, trans-fats, polyunsaturated fatty acids, linoleic acid├╣research facts about fatty acids and their relationship to heart disease and atherosclerosis, obesity, cancer, and neurological disorders abound. Chemical names appear on every nutrition label. But, just what do these terms mean in health and disease?

The Fats of Life delineates the importance of essential fatty acids, with a focus on distinctions between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acid variants. The chemical and biochemical characteristics of these fatty acids and their metabolism to a vast array of potent bioactive messengers are described in the context of their potential effects on general health and impact on various diseases and neurological disorders. Glen D. Lawrence addresses in detail the capacity for polyunsaturated fatty acids to influence asthma, atherosclerosis, heart disease, inflammation, cancer, and immunity. Lawrence makes clear that our understanding of the biochemical and physiological effects of dietary fats has advanced tremendously as a result of careful research, but he also stresses that this knowledge has not easily translated into sound dietary recommendations.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813546773
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press
  • Publication date: 2/4/2010
  • Pages: 296
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

GLEN D. LAWRENCE is a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Long Island University. He served as a science advisor at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
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Table of Contents

1 The dietary fat doctrine 3

2 Lipid terminology, structure, and function 15

3 Some dietary fats are essential 33

4 Signals, messengers, and responses 44

5 Oxidation and lipid peroxidation 60

6 Atherosclerosis 73

7 Risk factors in cardiovascular disease 88

8 Lipid-lowering drugs 96

9 Inflammation, anti-inflammatory drugs, and lipid mediators 107

10 Cancer and immunity 122

11 Neurological development, memory, and learning 138

12 Functional disorders of the nervous system 152

13 Neurodegenerative diseases 166

14 Obesity : health consequences and dietary influences 183

15 Dietary choices for comprehensive health 201

App. A Fundamentals of chemical bonding and polarity 215

App. B Fatty acid composition of dietary fats and oils 219

App. C Chemical structures of eicosanoids 222

App. D Human lipoproteins : their components, properties, and associated proteins 225

App. E Overview of neuronal processes 228

Glossary 235

References 249

Index 271

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