Palmitic acid is a saturated fatty acid present in processed meat products and common in Western diets. It is associated with obesity and insulin resistance. Excessive amounts induce lipoapoptosis (a type of programmed cell death) and causes fatty liver disease, which can lead to cirrhosis or even liver cancer. Myristic acid is found in vegetable oils, common in Eastern diets and, unlike palmitic acid, is not lipotoxic.
In in vitro studies, researchers have found that myristic acid increases the lipotoxicity of palmitic acid by stimulating the synthesis of ceramides, a type of lipid. In vivo studies show that while the consumption of diets enriched in palmitic or myristic acid does not necessarily produce liver damage, consumption of diets rich in both fatty acids induce inflammation accompanied by severe steatohepatitis and liver fibrosis, effects that can be prevented by inhibiting the production of ceramide. Thus, as Drs. Fernández- Checa and Garcia-Ruiz describe: "the abusive consumption of processed food rich in palmitic acid accompanied by diets with myristic acid should be avoided because it can be a risk factor for the development of steatohepatitis".
Referencia del artículo:
Martínez L, Torres S, Baulies A, Alarcón-Vila C, Elena M, Fabriàs G, Casas J, Caballeria J,Fernandez-Checa JC, García-Ruiz C.
Oncotarget. 2015 Dec 8;6(39):41479-96. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.6286.