A new study released today in Nature Communications has uncovered why foods rich in unsaturated fats, for example, olive oil, can protect us from cardiovascular disease.
ApoA-IV is involved in protecting the circulatory system
The Keenan Research Center for Biomedical Science (KRCBS) at St. Michael’s Hospital has recently shown that ApoA-IV is an inhibitor of the platelets, small blood cells that have a crucial function in multiple conditions, including bleeding and cardiovascular diseases.
Apolipoprotein A-IV, commonly known as ApoA-IV, is a plasma protein. ApoA-IV concentrations peak after food digestion, especially in foods rich in unsaturated fats.
These novel discoveries propose that ApoA-IV is a glycoprotein blocker on the platelet surface GPIIbIIIa (also called Alpha-II-Beta integrin). Alpha-II-Beta integrin is a receptor of platelets that is required for the cells to group together in the blood, a process known as platelet aggregation.
Platelet aggregation can result in the occlusion of the blood vessels that are blocking blood flow and causing thrombosis. If vessel obstruction takes place in the heart or brain, it can result in a heart attack, stroke or even death.
This is how unsaturated fats protect us from cardiovascular diseases
The investigators also studied the relationship between ApoA-IV and foods and discovered that after every meal, platelets are pumped up, which makes it much simpler for them to bind to white blood cells.
ApoA-IV enhances blood circulation almost right after meals that are high in unsaturated fats and lowers hyperactivity and platelet binding, thereby reducing inflammation after meals and decreasing the risk of heart attack or stroke.
Foods rich in unsaturated fats are avocados, nuts, and vegetable oils such as soybeans, canola, and olive oil. Diets based on meat, on the other hand, also contain saturated fats.
In conclusion, those foods rich in unsaturated fats are protecting us against cardiovascular diseases.