Olestra, a nondigestible, nonabsorbable fat - Effect on gastrointestinal and colonic transit

Avanish M. Aggarwal, Michael Camilleri, Sidney F. Phillips, Thomas G. Schlagheck, Manuel L. Brown, George M. Thomfode

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Olestra, the name proposed for the mixture of hexa-, hepta-and octaesters of sucrose and long-chain fatty acids, is a nondigestible, nonabsorbable lipid with physical properties and taste that are similar to those of natural triglycerides. Our aim was to determine whether substitution with up to 30g of olestra in a 45-g fat meal would alter gastric, small bowel, and colonic transit. Five groups, each of six healthy volunteers, ingested 800-kcal, 22-g protein meals containing a total of 45 g of lipid (N=24) or 15 g of lipid (N=6). Among those receiving the 45-g fat meal, 0, 7.5, 15 and 30g of lipid were substituted with olestra (N=6 per group). The 15-g fat meal consisted entirely of natural triglyceride. A dual gamma camera scintigraphic method was used to estimate gastric and small bowel transit (99mTc pellets in the meal) and colonic transit (111In pellets). The latter was achieved by the delayed release of111In pellets from a capsule coated with a pH-sensitive polymer, methacrylate, that disintegrated in the terminal ileum. There were no differences in the gastric, small bowel, or colonic transits of any of the five equicaloric meals. Some individuals had a significantly greater 48-hr stool weight after ingesting 15g of olestra, but stool weights of subjects consuming 7.5 g or 30g of olestra did not differ from controls. We conclude that substitution with olestra of up to 30 g in a 45-g fat meal does not significantly alter gastrointestinal transit in healthy subjects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1009-1014
Number of pages6
JournalDigestive diseases and sciences
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1993


  • colonic filling
  • gastric emptying
  • olestra
  • small bowel transit
  • sucrose polyester

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Gastroenterology


Dive into the research topics of 'Olestra, a nondigestible, nonabsorbable fat - Effect on gastrointestinal and colonic transit'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this