Mixed Spices at Culinary Doses Have Prebiotic Effects in Healthy Adults: A Pilot Study.
Plain language summary
An increasing body of evidence suggests that the gut microbiota has a profound impact on human health. While the microbiome of a healthy individual is relatively stable, gut microbial dynamics can be influenced by host lifestyle and dietary choices. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of mixed spices (cinnamon, oregano, ginger, black pepper, and cayenne pepper) at culinary doses consumed over 2 weeks in a standardized 5g capsule on the production of gut microbiota and short-chain fatty acids The study is a randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind pilot study carried out with a total of 31 healthy women and men aged between 18 and 65. The subjects were randomly allocated to one of the two intervention groups. Results indicate that daily intake of 5g of mixed spices for 2 weeks in healthy subjects resulted in a significant reduction in the relative abundance of the phylum Firmicutes (bacteria), and a trend of increasing in phylum Bacteroidetes (bacteria) as compared with a matched control group. Authors conclude that a mixture of spices at culinary doses affects the composition of gut microbiota.
undefined: Spices were used as food preservatives prior to the advent of refrigeration, suggesting the possibility of effects on microbiota. Previous studies have shown prebiotic activities in animals and in vitro, but there has not been a demonstration of prebiotic or postbiotic effects at culinary doses in humans. In this randomized placebo-controlled study, we determined in twenty-nine healthy adults the effects on the gut microbiota of the consumption daily of capsules containing 5 g of mixed spices at culinary doses by comparison to a matched control group consuming a maltodextrin placebo capsule. The 16S ribosomal RNA sequencing data were used for microbial characterization. Spice consumption resulted in a significant reduction in Firmicutes abundance ( < 0.033) and a trend of enrichment in Bacteroidetes ( < 0.097) compared to placebo group. Twenty-six operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were different between the spice and placebo groups after intervention. Furthermore, there was a significant negative correlation between fecal short-chain fatty acid propionate concentration and Firmicutes abundance in spice intervention group ( < 0.04). The production of individual fecal short-chain fatty acid was not significantly changed by spice consumption in this study. Mixed spices consumption significantly modified gut microbiota, suggesting a prebiotic effect of spice consumption at culinary doses.
Pistachio nuts reduce triglycerides and body weight by comparison to refined carbohydrate snack in obese subjects on a 12-week weight loss program.
Journal of the American College of Nutrition. 2010;(3):198-203
OBJECTIVE There is a widely held view that, due to high fat content, snacking on nuts will lead to weight gain, ultimately causing unhealthy changes in lipid profiles. This study is designed to study the effects of pistachio snack consumption on body weight and lipid levels in obese participants under real-world conditions. METHODS Participants were randomly assigned to consume 1 of 2 isocaloric weight reduction diets for 12 weeks, with each providing 500 cal per day less than resting metabolic rate. Each diet included an afternoon snack of either 53 g (240 cal) of salted pistachios (n = 31) or 56 g of salted pretzels (220 cal; n = 28). RESULTS Both groups lost weight during the 12-week study (time trend, p < 0.001), but there were significant differences in the changes in body mass index between the pretzel and pistachio groups (pistachio, 30.1 ± 0.4 to 28.8 ± 0.4 vs. pretzel, 30.9 ± 0.4 to 30.3 ± 0.5). At 6 and 12 weeks, triglycerides were significantly lower in the pistachio group compared with the pretzel group (88.04 ± 9.80 mg/dL vs. 144.56 ± 18.86 mg/dL, p = 0.01 at 6 weeks and 88.10 ± 6.78 mg/dL vs. 132.15 ± 16.76 mg/dL, p = 0.02 at 12 weeks), and there was a time trend difference between the 2 groups over the 12 weeks (p < 0.01). There were no significant differences in total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, insulin, or glucose between the 2 groups. CONCLUSION Pistachios can be consumed as a portion-controlled snack for individuals restricting calories to lose weight without concern that pistachios will cause weight gain. By comparison to refined carbohydrate snacks such as pretzels, pistachios may have beneficial effects on triglycerides as well.
Sibutramine plus meal replacement therapy for body weight loss and maintenance in obese patients.
Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.). 2007;(6):1464-72
OBJECTIVE Our objective was to assess the efficacy and safety of sibutramine with a low-calorie diet (LCD) and commercial meal-replacement product in achieving weight loss and weight-loss maintenance in obese patients. RESEARCH METHODS AND PROCEDURES Eight U.S. centers recruited 148 obese patients for a 3-month comprehensive weight-loss therapy (Phase I) comprising daily sibutramine 10 mg + LCD (two Slim-Fast meal-replacement shakes, one low-calorie meal; total kcal/d = 1200-1500). Patients (N = 113) who lost > or =5% of initial body weight during Phase I were randomized for a 9-month period (Phase II) to daily sibutramine 15 mg + LCD (one meal-replacement shake; two low-calorie meals: total kcal/d approximately 1200-1500) or daily placebo + three low-calorie meals (total kcal/d approximately 1200-1500). Both phases included behavior modification. Efficacy was assessed by body weight change during each phase and by the number of patients at endpoint maintaining > or =80% of the weight they had lost by the end of Phase I. Other outcomes included changes in cardiovascular and metabolic risk factors, adverse events, and vital signs. RESULTS Mean body weight change during Phase I was -8.3 kg (p < 0.001). Patients randomized to sibutramine in Phase II had an additional -2.5 kg mean weight loss vs. a 2.8-kg increase in the placebo group (p < 0.001). More sibutramine patients maintained > or =80% of their Phase I weight loss at the end of Phase II (85.5% vs. placebo 36.7%, p < 0.001). Most adverse events were mild or moderate in severity, and all serious adverse events were unrelated to sibutramine. DISCUSSION Sibutramine plus LCD with meal replacements and behavior modification is a safe and effective strategy for achieving and sustaining weight loss in obese patients.
Long-term efficacy of soy-based meal replacements vs an individualized diet plan in obese type II DM patients: relative effects on weight loss, metabolic parameters, and C-reactive protein.
European journal of clinical nutrition. 2005;(3):411-8
BACKGROUND Achieving significant weight loss and glycemic control in diabetic patients remains a challenging task. OBJECTIVE This study compared the effects of a soy-based meal replacement (MR) plan vs an individualized diet plan (IDP; as recommended by the American Diabetes Association) on weight loss and metabolic profile. DESIGN/SUBJECTS A total of 104 subjects were randomized prospectively to the two treatments for a total of 12 months. RESULTS In all, 77 of the 104 subjects completed the study. Percentage weight loss in MR group (4.57+/-0.81%) was significantly greater (P<0.05) than in IDP group (2.25+/-0.72%). Fasting plasma glucose was significantly reduced in MR group (126.4+/-4.9 mg/dl) compared with IDP group (152.5+/-6.6 mg/dl, P<0.0001) at 6 months but not at 12 months. Controlling for baseline levels, hemoglobin Alc level improved by 0.49+/-0.22% for those receiving MR when compared to IDP group (P<0.05). A greater number of subjects in MR group reduced their use of sulfonylureas (P<0.0001) and metformin (P<0.05) as compared to IDP group. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) decreased -26.3% (P = 0.019) in MR group compared to -7.06% (P = 0.338) in IDP group at 6 months. Similar changes were observed at 12 months with MR groups, with hs-CRP decreasing by -25.0% (P = 0.019) compared to -18.7% (P = 0.179) in IDP group. CONCLUSION This study demonstrates that MR is a viable strategy for weight reduction in diabetic patients, resulting in beneficial changes in measures of glycemic control and reduction of medications.
Insulin-leptin-visceral fat relation during weight loss.
INTRODUCTION The relation between insulin-leptin-visceral fat axis during weight loss has not been studied previously. AIMS To evaluate the insulin, leptin, and abdominal adiposity relation during weight loss in patients with upper body obesity. METHODOLOGY Twenty volunteers (7 men, 13 women) with mean age 50.6+/-6.3 (SD) and upper body obesity (weight 105.4+/-12.3 kg, BMI 35.9+/-2.5 kg/m2) were recruited. Participants were enrolled in a one-arm clinical study using a calorie-deficient diet and an escalating dose regimen of sibutramine, starting with 5 mg daily and increasing in 5-mg increments to 20 mg per day. Body weight, insulin, leptin, glucose, lipids, abdominal computed tomography (CT), and total body electrical conductance (TOBEC) were measured serially at weeks 0, 4, 8, 12, and 24. RESULTS Eighteen patients completed the 6-month study: one man and one woman discontinued because of adverse events. With diet and sibutramine, body weight was significantly and continuously reduced throughout the 6-month study. There was a 16.0% (p = 0.0001) reduction in body weight (p < 0.001) and 22.5% (p = 0.0001) decrease in total body fat mass. Abdominal CT scans showed a 28.3% (p = 0.0001) reduction in total abdominal fat, a 26.0% (p = 0.0001) reduction in subcutaneous fat (p < 0.001), and a 31.0% (p = 0.0003) reduction in visceral fat (p < 0.001). There was a 32.0% (p = 0.0008) reduction in leptin levels and 37.9% (p = 0.0001) reduction in insulin levels between baseline and week 4, but no further significant reduction in leptin and insulin levels was observed for the duration of the study. There was a significant correlation between insulin and leptin concentrations throughout the study (p = 0.0001). Leptin was presented as a function of insulin measured at the same time. Significant associations between visceral abdominal fat, subcutaneous fat, and leptin were also observed. CONCLUSION In this study, we found that leptin and insulin were related in weight loss. The data suggest that insulin may act as a strong regulator of leptin secretion during weight loss and that circulating leptin levels can be predicted by insulin level. Using sibutramine in conjunction with hypocaloric diet reduced body weight and decreased fat mass significantly. Visceral and subcutaneous abdominal fat depots were shown to decrease. Whether sibutramine exerts any selective reduction of visceral abdominal fat as opposed to total body fat mass will require further clinical investigation.
Liquid meal replacements and glycemic control in obese type 2 diabetes patients.
Obesity research. 2001;:341S-347S
OBJECTIVE Although weight management is an important component in the treatment of type 2 diabetes, there has been concern about the use of liquid meal replacements (MRs) in treating obese patients with type 2 diabetes because of the sugar content of the MRs. The goal of this study was to evaluate the safety and feasibility of using MRs for weight loss in obese patients with type 2 diabetes. RESEARCH METHODS AND PROCEDURES Seventy-five subjects with type 2 diabetes, treated only with oral agents, were recruited for this 12-week clinical study. Subjects were randomized into three groups using either a MR containing lactose, fructose, and sucrose, a MR in which fructose and sucrose were replaced with oligosaccharides (sugar-free Slim-Fast), or an exchange diet plan (EDP) using the proportion of macronutrients recommended by the American Diabetes Association. RESULTS Fifty-seven patients (41 MR and 16 EDP) finished the study. None developed serious adverse effects, including major hypoglycemic reactions. Weight losses in the MR 1 and MR 2 groups were comparable (6.4% and 6.7%, respectively) and greater than the weight loss in the EDP group (4.9%). Fasting glucose level was significantly reduced in the MR group compared with the EDP group (p = 0.012). There was a significant reduction in the MR group in total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol that was not seen in the EDP group. DISCUSSION We have shown that liquid MRs are a safe and effective weight loss tool for obese subjects with type 2 diabetes, and can result in improvements in body weight, glucose, insulin, hemoglobin A1c and lipid levels.
Weight control and risk factor reduction in obese subjects treated for 2 years with orlistat: a randomized controlled trial.
CONTEXT Orlistat, a gastrointestinal lipase inhibitor that reduces dietary fat absorption by approximately 30%, may promote weight loss and reduce cardiovascular risk factors. OBJECTIVE To test the hypothesis that orlistat combined with dietary intervention is more effective than placebo plus diet for weight loss and maintenance over 2 years. DESIGN Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study conducted from October 1992 to October 1995. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS Obese adults (body mass index [weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters], 30-43 kg/m2) evaluated at 18 US research centers. INTERVENTION Subjects received placebo plus a controlled-energy diet during a 4-week lead-in. On study day 1, the diet was continued and subjects were randomized to receive placebo 3 times a day or orlistat, 120 mg 3 times a day, for 52 weeks. After 52 weeks, subjects began a weight-maintenance diet, and the placebo group (n = 133) continued to receive placebo and orlistat-treated subjects were rerandomized to receive placebo 3 times a day (n = 138), orlistat, 60 mg (n = 152) or 120 mg (n = 153) 3 times a day, for an additional 52 weeks. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES Body weight change and changes in blood pressure and serum lipid, glucose, and insulin levels. RESULTS A total of 1187 subjects entered the protocol, and 892 were randomly assigned on day 1 to double-blind treatment. For intent-to-treat analysis, 223 placebo-treated subjects and 657 orlistat-treated subjects were evaluated. During the first year orlistat-treated subjects lost more weight (mean +/- SEM, 8.76+/-0.37 kg) than placebo-treated subjects (5.81+/-0.67 kg) (P<.001). Subjects treated with orlistat, 120 mg 3 times a day, during year 1 and year 2 regained less weight during year 2 (3.2+/-0.45 kg; 35.2% regain) than those who received orlistat, 60 mg (4.26+/-0.57 kg; 51.3% regain), or placebo (5.63+/-0.42 kg; 63.4% regain) in year 2 (P<.001). Treatment with orlistat, 120 mg 3 times a day, was associated with improvements in fasting low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and insulin levels. CONCLUSIONS Two-year treatment with orlistat plus diet significantly promotes weight loss, lessens weight regain, and improves some obesity-related disease risk factors.
Topical fat reduction.
Obesity research. 1995;:561S-568S
The fat on women's thighs is more difficult to mobilize due to increased alpha-2 adrenergic receptor activity induced by estrogen. Lipolysis can be initiated through adipocyte receptor stimulation (beta adrenergic) or inhibition (adenosine or alpha-2 adrenergic) or by inhibition of phosphodiesterase. Since many women desire regional thigh fat loss, a series of clinical trials were initiated using one thigh as a double-blinded control. Trial #1: Five overweight women had injections of isoproterenol at intervals around the thigh three times a week for 4 weeks with diet and walking. Trial #2: Five overweight woman had ointment containing forskolin, yohimbine and aminophylline applied to the thigh five times a week for 4 weeks after hypertonic warm soaks with a diet and walking. Trial #3: Eighteen overweight women were divided into three groups of six and trial #2 was repeated with each agent alone vs. placebo using forskolin, yohimbine or aminophylline in separate ointments. Trial #4: Thirty overweight women had 10% aminophylline ointment applied to the thigh five times a week for 6 weeks with diet and walking. Chemistry panel, theophylline level and patch testing were performed. Trial #5: Twelve women had trial #4 repeated with 2% aminophylline cream without a diet or walking. Trial #6: Trial #5 was repeated with 0.5% aminophylline cream. All trials except yohimbine ointment gave significantly more girth loss from the treated thigh (p < 0.05 to p < 0.001). Chemistry panel showed no toxicity. Theophylline was undetectable and patch testing was negative. We conclude that topical fat reduction for women's thighs can be achieved without diet or exercise.
Clinical evaluation of a minimal intervention meal replacement regimen for weight reduction.
Journal of the American College of Nutrition. 1994;(6):608-14
OBJECTIVE The purpose of this study was to evaluate a simplified weight loss program in which subjects were provided a widely available meal replacement product and its package insert information (Ultra Slim-Fast). METHOD Weekly follow-up visits were carried out by non-physician personnel for weight measurement, distribution of product, and completion of a subjective questionnaire. No dietary counseling was provided. A total of 273 of 301 subjects (91%) completed 12 weeks of study. Men lost 50% (from 119 to 108% of ideal body weight) and women lost 35% (from 122 to 111% of ideal body weight) of excess body weight. Thirty-five patients who lost < 9 lbs in 12 weeks were considered non-adherent and were excluded from the next phase of the study during which 238 subjects were followed biweekly. RESULTS Despite a $25/week payment for participation nearly 44% of subjects dropped out or were judged non-compliant prior to the end of the study. At 116 weeks, 133 (97 females, 36 males) of 238 subjects remained in the study (44% of the initial population), with average weight loss from baseline of 13.6 +/- 10.5 lb in females and 14.0 +/- 10.5 lb in males. DISCUSSION The weight loss observed (approximately 10% of body weight) is significant and has been associated with important health benefits particularly for patients with hypertension and non-insulin dependent diabetes. The potential advantages of using meal replacements for mild obesity include wide availability to aid compliance, low cost and minimal professional intervention.
Treatment of anorexia and weight loss with megestrol acetate in patients with cancer or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome.
Seminars in oncology. 1991;(1 Suppl 2):35-42
Anorexia is a symptom of cancer and a cause of decreased caloric intake and weight loss. Successful treatment for anorexia can improve the patient's well-being and prevent or reverse the effects of anorexia on nutrition. Following reports of appetite enhancement and weight gain in uncontrolled studies of high-dose (320 to 1,600 mg/d) megestrol acetate in patients with cancer or AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome), several randomized, placebo-controlled trials have been completed. These trials demonstrate that megestrol acetate therapy improves appetite and food intake in patients with anorexia and advanced cancer, leading to weight gain in a subset of patients. The mechanisms of action of megestrol acetate (a progesterone derivative) probably include both behavioral and metabolic effects. Several carefully designed randomized trials are under way to establish the optimal dose and to determine the mechanism of weight gain. Patients with cancer or AIDS who complain of anorexia and whose nutritional status is compromised may benefit from megestrol acetate therapy.