The development of a functional food to reduce selected risk factors associated with coronary heart disease

  • Wyndham Boobier

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    Coronary heart disease (CHD) remains one of this country's leading cause of mortality. This study has concentrated on the development of a functional biscuit, which will reduce selected risk factors for heart disease, in particular elevated serum homocysteine. The developed biscuit contains vitamins Be, Bi 2, and folic acid, all of which have been shown to be important in homocysteine metabolism.

    There were a number of criteria that had to be met for the author to receive the full support of Burton's Foods: (1) The biscuit must remain commercially viable and be accepted by the consumer. (2) Enzymes should not be used in the preparation of the dough. (3) The jam could not be modified in any way. Without exception, these have been successfully achieved. Jammie Dodgers were selected as the control product for a number of reasons. They are one of the UK's best selling biscuits and are consumed by both children and adults. This makes the target number of consumers very large. In addition, the standard product is high in both fat and sugar, its modification into a health promoting biscuit was therefore technically challenging.

    The product resulting from this project is commercially viable; it is low in fat and sugar, contains the vitamins that will deliver the full RNI on consumption of just two biscuits daily, and is not significantly different to the control product. The product is also palatable.

    Clinical trials have demonstrated that following consumption of the product, serum homocysteine, an independent risk factor for coronary heart disease, has been significantly reduced. In addition, there appears to be a relationship with consumption of the modified biscuit and a fall in serum lipoprotein(a).

    It is possible to reduce selected mutable risk factors associated with heart disease, simply by the daily consumption of a product that is liked and consumed by a great number of people.

    As far as the author is aware, there has been no other development of this kind prior to this study, i.e. a biscuit that will reduce the risk of coronary heart disease by lowering serum homocysteine. This biscuit is therefore the first of its kind.
    Date of AwardMar 2003
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorBruce Davies (Supervisor) & Julien Baker (Supervisor)


    • Coronary heart disease
    • Prevention

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