Plasma thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) in young adults: Obesity increases fasting levels only in men whereas glucose ingestion, and not protein or lipid intake, increases postprandial concentrations regardless of sex and obesity

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Oxidative stress and damage participate in the pathophysiology of obesity and its metabolic complications. We studied the influence of sex, obesity, and ingestion of different macronutrients on fasting and postprandial thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), which can be considered as an index of lipid peroxidation and oxidative damage.

Methods and results

We studied 19 men and 17 women, out of whom nine men and eight women had obesity. We collected blood samples in the fasting state and, on alternate days, following the ingestion of 300 kcal in the form of glucose, lipids, or proteins. Fasting TBARS concentrations correlated with waist circumference and were increased in obese men compared with nonobese men. This increase was not, however, observed in women. TBARS concentrations showed a marked increase following the ingestion of glucose in parallel to the increase in plasma glucose when considering all subjects as a whole, but did not increase after the oral intake of lipids and proteins.


Plasma TBARS concentrations are increased in the fasting state only in obese men in association with abdominal adiposity, and increases markedly after the ingestion of glucose, but not after oral intake of lipids and proteins, regardless of sex and obesity.

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