Matrix structure of dairy products results in different postprandial lipid responses: a randomized crossover trial

Louise Kjølbæk*, Jesper Malling Schmidt, Emilien Rouy, Klaus Jensen, Arne Astrup, Hanne Christine S. Bertram, Marianne Hammershøj, Anne Raben

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Background: The dairy matrix may influence digestion and absorption of lipids and thereby risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). However, few postprandial studies have compared dairy products that differed only in terms of their matrix. Objectives: We aimed to investigate acute 8-h postprandial lipid, glycemic, and appetite responses after intake of isoenergetic dairy meals with different matrixes, but similar nutritional composition. Methods: Twenty-five normal-weight men (18-40 y old) were enrolled in a randomized controlled crossover trial. On 4 test days, a meal with 1 of 4 dairy products was served: cheddar cheese (Cheese), homogenized Cheese (Hom. Cheese), micellar casein isolate (MCI) with cream (MCI Drink), and a gel produced from the MCI Drink by addition of Glucono Delta-Lactone (MCI Gel). The fat- and protein-matched dairy products differed in terms of their casein network, fat droplet size, and/or texture. Blood biochemistry and appetite responses were collected. Results: Eighteen participants completed the trial. Postprandial triglycerides (TGs) (primary outcome) increased by (mean ± SEM) 0.24 ± 0.07 and 0.19 ± 0.07 mmol/L after MCI Gel compared with Cheese and Hom. Cheese, respectively (both P ≤ 0.05). Likewise, MCI Gel increased TG incremental AUC compared with Cheese and Hom. Cheese (both P < 0.05), and peak compared with Cheese (P < 0.05). ApoB-48 (primary outcome) was unaffected by dairy matrix. For free fatty acids (FFAs), glucose, and insulin, time × meal interactions were observed (all P < 0.001). During the first 2 h, FFAs were lower for Cheese than for MCI products, whereas the opposite was observed for glucose and insulin. Conclusions: Postprandial TG but not apoB-48 response was higher after MCI Gel, indicating that the type of casein network influences lipid responses. This suggests that the dairy matrix may also affect risk factors for CVDs. Reducing fat droplet size (i.e., Hom. Cheese) did not affect blood biochemistry.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Pages (from-to) 1729–1742
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021


  • apolipoprotein
  • appetite
  • cardiovascular disease
  • casein
  • cheese
  • cholesterol
  • fat
  • glucose
  • insulin
  • lipidemia


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