Work groups at Technische Universit-t M-nchen (TUM) under Prof. Peter Schieberle and at the University of Vienna under Prof. Veronika Somoza studied four different edible fats and oils: Lard, butterfat, rapeseed oil and olive oil. Over a period of three months, the study participants ate 500 grams of low-fat yoghurt enriched with one of the four fats or oils every day - as a supplement to their normal diet.
"Olive oil had the biggest satiety effect," reports Prof. Peter Schieberle, Head of the TUM Chair of Food Chemistry and Director of the German Research Center for Food Chemistry. "The olive oil group showed a higher concentration of the satiety hormone serotonin in their blood. Subjectively speaking, these participants also reported that they found the olive oil yoghurt very filling." During the study period, no member of this group recorded an increase in their body fat percentage or their weight.
Aroma is the key
"The findings surprised us," admits Schieberle, "because rapeseed oil and olive oil contain similar fatty acids." The researchers decided to turn their attention to a completely different type of substance - the aroma compounds in olive oil. In the second part of the study, one group was given yoghurt with olive oil aroma extracts and a control group was given plain yoghurt.
The results were conclusive: The olive oil group's calorie intake remained the same, but the control group had been consuming an extra 176 kilocalories per day. Schieberle explains: "The aroma group adapted their eating habits - but the control group participants were obviously not able to do likewise. We also found that in comparison to the other group, the control group had less of the satiety hormone serotonin in their blood."
Direct impact on blood sugar level