Benefits of flavanol supplementation in treating obesity

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(Natural News) Researchers at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and Ohio State University evaluated the preventive effects of grape seed and pine bark flavanol supplementation in the context of a high-fat diet (HFD). Their findings were published in the journal Nutrition Research.

  • Weight gain and obesity are associated with increased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines.
  • According to studies, dietary flavanols can reduce the severity of metabolic aberrations caused by an HFD.
  • The degree of polymerization of flavanols also appears to play a role in determining the extent of their protective effects.
  • The researchers fed mice 35 mg/kg body weight grape seed or pine bark daily for 13 weeks as part of an HFD then compared them with mice fed a low-fat diet and mice fed an HFD without flavanol supplementation (control).
  • The group that received grape seed, which gained the most weight overall, had the lowest levels of interleukin-6.
  • Low-dose flavanol supplementation, regardless of the mean degree of polymerization, reduced cytokine production despite increasing weight gain.

Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that flavanols have obesity-independent effects that may be useful for ameliorating inflammation linked to obesity and diabetes. They also believe that flavanol-induced hyperphagia may help attenuate cachexia.

Journal Reference:

Griffin LE, Fausnacht DW, Tuzo JL, Addington AK, Racine KC, Zhang H, Hughes MD, England KM, Bruno RS, O’keefe SF, et al. FLAVANOL SUPPLEMENTATION PROTECTS AGAINST OBESITY-ASSOCIATED INCREASES IN SYSTEMIC INTERLEUKIN-6 LEVELS WITHOUT INHIBITING BODY MASS GAIN IN MICE FED A HIGH-FAT DIET. Nutrition Research. June 2019;66:32–47. DOI: 10.1016/j.nutres.2019.03.011

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