Sunday, 22 May 2005

This presentation is part of: High School Education Posters

Can the Health Benefits of Oatmeal be Undone?

Michael Kortrey, Woodbridge High School, Woodbridge, NJ

High cholesterol levels have been connected with numerous ailments including heart disease, the leading cause of death in Americans and Western Europeans. It is now widely accepted that eating foods high in fiber will reduce the risk of heart disease, primarily because during digestion oatmeal fiber forms a gel and physically blocks the absorption of cholesterol lipids. This research project passed a mixture of bovine serum (blood) cholesterol through an oatmeal sieve. Using a spectrophotomer, at 590nm, in conjunction with an Amplex® Red assay kit, serum samples were assayed before and after sieving to check for a reduced lipid concentration. Other dietary substances such as coffee were added to the sieving process in further trials in order to study the interplay of those substances with oatmeal and cholesterol during digestion. Results from the assays determine if oatmeal is effective in blocking cholesterol absorption and whether secondary food elements interfere with the possible benefits of the oatmeal consumption.

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