Relationship between red blood cell membrane fatty acid composition and dietary fatty acids level in obese adolescents with/without metabolic syndrome

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Ömer Güneş
Meltem Soylu
Neriman İnanç
Emre Tascılar
Erdim Sertoğlu
Ahmet Taş
Muhittin A. Serdar
Okan Özcan


Adolescent, Dietary fatty acids, Metabolic syndrome, Obesity, Red blood cell membrane fatty acids


Background: Dietary lipids may lead to significant changes in the composition of cell membrane structure. Objective: The association between red blood cell (RBC) membrane fatty acid composition and dietary fatty acids intake in obese adolescents with and without metabolic syndrome was investigated. Methods: Ninety-six adolescents (59 obese and 37 lean) were included in the study. The obese subjects were divided into two groups with (n=26, aged 12.3 years ) and without (n=33, aged 12.7 years) metabolic syndrome. The mean age of lean participants was 11.8. The criteria for metabolic syndrome were: 10 <16 age group; BMI ≥ 95th percentile, triglycerides  ≥ 150 mg/dL, HDL- C< 40 mg/dL, blood pressure systolic ≥ 130, diastolic ≥ 85 mm Hg, glucose ≥ 100 mg/dL. Subjects with any 3 of these 6 items were accepted with metabolic syndrome. Nutrient intakes were recorded for 3 days by a dietitian. Anthropometric and blood chemistry variables and RBC membrane fatty acid levels were measured. Results: BMI, BMI-SDS, body fat percentage, blood pressure, TG, ALT, insulin, HOMA-IR levels (p<0.001) of obese were significantly higher than lean adolescents whereas HDL-C levels were lower (p<0.001) in obese than lean. Fiber, C22:1 ω-9 MUFA, C20:4 ω-6 PUFA consumption were higher (p<0.05) in obese with metabolic syndrome. Consumption of total ω-3 PUFAs were higher (p<0.05) in obese with metabolic syndrome and in leans than those without the metabolic syndrome.  The RBC membrane C16:1 ω-7 fatty acid levels were higher but C20:5 ω-3 levels were lower (p<0.001) in obese. Diet fiber was positively associated with RBC C16:1 ω-7 fatty acid (r=0.239, p<0.05). A positive slight correlation was determined between diet and RBC membrane C20:5 ω-3 (r= 0.200, p= 0.051). Conclusion: Dietary fatty acids affected some anthropometric measurements and blood chemistry.  The RBC membrane C20:5 ω-3 slightly correlated with diet C20:5 ω-3.


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