12 January - 20 June 2016

Researchers show soluble fibre reduces inflammation and may curb hunger and reduce obesity

29 July 2015

The Institute of Nutrition and Health Food, Shanghai, China has studied the effect of α-galacto-oligosaccharides (α-GOSs) to reduce appetite, food intake and weight related inflammation and in turn to combat the obesity pandemic. Αlpha-GOSs are fermentable soluble fibres, which are of particular interest due to their biological associations with increased satiety and reduced energy intake. It is hypothesised that this is due to the lower energy-density of high fibre foods, the need to chew high fibre foods for longer which increases gastric distention and the delay caused by soluble fibre on gastric emptying. The 15 day study used overweight men and women, divided into 4 groups: a control group who consumed 250mL of oolong tea twice a day, a group that consumed 6g/day α-GOSs in their tea, a group that consumed 12g/day α-GOSs in their tea, and a group that consumed 18g/day in theirs. The aim of the study was to determine the impact of α-GOSs consumption on appetite and energy intake. 

It was clear that mean average scores for hunger, desire to eat, and subsequent energy consumption were lower in the three α-GOSs groups than in the control group. Consequently, fullness and satiety scores were higher in the three α-GOSs groups. The energy intake from day 0 to 15 was significantly reduced in the group who received α-GOSs supplementation than the control group. This could explain how the concentration of plasma endotoxin, an inflammatory marker linked to weight related disease, was significantly lower after 15 days of α-GOSs intake amongst all 3 groups. 

The findings showed that α-GOSs consumption reduce appetite which is associated with a reduction in energy intake during meals, and that α-GOSs noticeable reduce inflammatory markers – results consistent with previous studies. The study clearly showed a link between appetite regulation, weight loss and the intake of α-GOSs, forming a better basis for treatment of obesity and dietary intervention.

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