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Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to peanuts, peanut oil and peanut butter manufactured exclusively from roasted peanuts, and maintenance of normal blood LDL cholesterol concentrations (ID 1284) pursuant to Article 13(1) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006

EFSA Journal 2011;9(4):2045 [15 pp.]. doi:10.2903/j.efsa.2011.2045
  EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) Panel Members Carlo Agostoni, Jean-Louis Bresson, Susan Fairweather-Tait, Albert Flynn, Ines Golly, Hannu Korhonen, Pagona Lagiou, Martinus Løvik, Rosangela Marchelli, Ambroise Martin, Bevan Moseley, Monika Neuhäuser-Berthold, Hildegard Przyrembel, Seppo Salminen, Yolanda Sanz, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Stephan Strobel, Inge Tetens, Daniel Tomé, Hendrik van Loveren and Hans Verhagen Acknowledgment The Panel wishes to thank for the preparatory work on this scientific opinion: The members of the Working Group on Claims: Carlo Agostoni, Jean-Louis Bresson, Susan Fairweather-Tait, Albert Flynn, Ines Golly, Marina Heinonen, Hannu Korhonen, Martinus Løvik, Ambroise Martin, Hildegard Przyrembel, Seppo Salminen, Yolanda Sanz, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Inge Tetens, Hendrik van Loveren and Hans Verhagen. The members of the Claims Sub-Working Group on Cardiovascular Health/Oxidative Stress: Antti Aro, Marianne Geleijnse, Marina Heinonen, Ambroise Martin, Wilhelm Stahl and Henk van den Berg. Contact nda@efsa.europa.eu
Type: Opinion of the Scientific Committee/Scientific Panel On request from: European Commission Question number: EFSA-Q-2008-2022 Adopted: 06 December 2010 Published: 08 April 2011 Affiliation: European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy
Abstract

No abstract available

Summary

Following a request from the European Commission, the Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies was asked to provide a scientific opinion on a list of health claims pursuant to Article 13 of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006. This opinion addresses the scientific substantiation of health claims in relation to peanuts, peanut oil and peanut butter manufactured exclusively from roasted peanuts, and maintenance of normal blood LDL-cholesterol concentrations. The scientific substantiation is based on the information provided by the Member States in the consolidated list of Article 13 health claims and references which EFSA has received from Member States or directly from stakeholders.

The foods that are the subject of the health claim are peanuts, peanut oil and peanut butter. The Panel considers that whereas peanut butter which is not manufactured exclusively from roasted peanuts is not sufficiently characterised in relation to the claimed effect because of its unknown fatty acid composition, the foods, peanuts, peanut oil and peanut butter manufactured exclusively from roasted peanuts, which are the subject of the health claim, are sufficiently characterised in relation to the claimed effect.

The claimed effect is “helps achieve normal cholesterol levels by reducing blood total and LDL cholesterol and thereby promoting heart health”. The target population is assumed to be the general population. The Panel considers that maintenance of normal blood LDL-cholesterol concentrations is a beneficial physiological effect.

In weighing the evidence, the Panel took into account that the evidence provided did not establish that consumption of peanuts has an effect on blood LDL-cholesterol concentrations beyond what could be expected from the fatty acid composition of peanuts, that the cholesterol-lowering effect of peanuts could be attributed to the content of MUFAs and PUFAs in peanuts, and that part of the effect is due to the replacement of mixtures of SFAs in the diet by MUFAs and PUFAs, which are the prevalent fatty acids in peanuts.

On the basis of the data presented, the Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has not been established between the consumption of peanuts, peanut oil and peanut butter manufactured exclusively from roasted peanuts, and maintenance of normal blood LDL-cholesterol concentrations beyond what could be expected from the fatty acid composition of peanuts.

A claim on the replacement of mixtures of SFAs with cis-MUFAs and/or cis-PUFAs in foods or diets and maintenance of normal blood LDL-cholesterol concentrations has already been assessed with a favourable outcome.

A claim on linoleic acid and maintenance of normal blood cholesterol concentrations has also already been assessed with a favourable outcome.

Keywords

Peanut, peanut oil, peanut butter, LDL-cholesterol, health claims