Resveratrol Reduces High Fat Diets Effects On Mitochondrial Function

Resveratrol reduces high fat diet's effect on mitochondrial function

Life Extension Update

Tuesday, September 9, 2014. An article published on August 23, 2014 in the Journal of Food Science reports the finding of a beneficial effect for resveratrol in preventing the adverse effects of a high fat diet on mitochondrial function and other factors.

"High-fat diet is a significant risk factor for health, and mitochondrial dysfunction is one of the major events activating cell death pathways during high fat diet-induced oxidative stress," write Bin Wang and colleagues at China's School of Food Science and Technology in Jiangsu in their introduction. "We have already reported that several immune functions were changed in mice by high-fat feeding, indicating that the proinflammatory state of obese individuals might be related to chronic excessive nutrient intake."

The team divided 24 mice to receive a normal diet, a high fat diet or a high fat diet enhanced with 0.06% resveratrol for twenty weeks. At the end of the experiment, blood and spleen cell samples were analyzed for regulatory T cell counts and other factors.

While regulatory T cells in blood and spleen were reduced by the high fat diet, their survival was improved in animals that received resveratrol. Resveratrol was also associated with a decrease in the elevation of reactive oxygen species production and decline in mitochondrial function observed in the regulatory T cells of high fat diet-fed animals. Resveratrol was found to increase the expression of PGC-1alpha, a regulator of mitochondrial biogenesis, and reduce regulatory T cell apoptosis (programmed cell death).

"This study has verified that resveratrol managed to protect T regulatory cells against apoptosis induced by high fat diet, with the subcellular mechanism being the relief of oxidative stress as well as the regulation of mitochondrial biogenesis and function," Dr Wang and colleagues conclude. "The results expand current understanding of the inflammatory response induced by high fat diet and provide a potential interventional strategy for the recovery of T regulatory cells by supplementing resveratrol."

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Grape seed and skin protect kidneys against effects of high fat diet
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An article published online on January 7, 2013 in the journal Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism reveals the finding of Tunisian researchers of a protective effect for an extract of grape seed and skin against kidney dysfunction in rodents consuming a high fat diet.

In their introduction to the article, Kamel Charradi and associates note that while cellular lipid overload has been associated with the dysfunction of several organs, including the heart and liver, its effect on kidney function is less well understood. However, they remark that lipotoxicity-induced oxidative stress has been found to be involved in the development of a variety of kidney disorders.

The current research was intended to study the association between obesity-induced oxidative stress and kidney dysfunction, and to evaluate the potential protective properties of grape seed and skin extract. Twenty-four rats were divided to receive a high fat diet or standard diet for six weeks. The two groups were subdivided to receive a daily intraperitoneal injection of an extract of grape seed and skin or a control substance. At the end of the experiment, plasma samples were analyzed for indicators of kidney function, and the animals' kidneys were examined for lipid content, oxidative stress and other factors.

Rats that received a high fat diet had increased kidney triglycerides and altered kidney function indicators linked to increased oxidative stress. These effects were reduced among those that received the grape seed/skin extract. The researchers suggest resveratrol, quercetin, catechins or unsaturated fatty acids as possible compounds in grape seed/skin extract that are responsible for the current study's findings.

"The use of an antioxidant as grape seed skin extract could be beneficial in the prevention and treatment of high fat diet-induced kidney disturbances," they conclude.


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Health Concern

Obesity and Weight Loss

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Green tea is rich in powerful antioxidants called catechins. Studies have shown that green tea extracts are able to inhibit the activity of the lipase enzyme and reduce absorption of fats from the intestine (Juhel 2000; Koo 2007). In an animal model of obesity induced by a high-fat diet, supplementation with the green tea catechin epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) attenuated insulin resistance and reduced cholesterol levels. Moreover, 16-weeks of treatment with EGCG mitigated increases in body weight, body fat, and visceral fat compared to no treatment. The researchers postulated that these anti-obesity effects may have been conferred in part by a reduction in fat absorption, which was obviated by increased fecal lipid content in animals that received the extract (Bose 2008). Another experiment showed that EGCG reduced the incorporation of lipids into fat cells, suggesting that green tea not only combats fat absorption from the gut, but also acts at the cellular level to combat fat storage (Lee 2009). A similarly designed trial in animals showed that 17 weeks of supplementation with EGCG offset some of the metabolic effects of a high-fat, Western-style diet including body weight gain and symptoms of metabolic syndrome; it also reduced markers of inflammation. Again, these results were partly attributed to reduced fat absorption (Chen 2011). In a human trial among moderately obese subjects, 3 months of supplementation with a green tea extract standardized to catechins reduced body weight by 4.6% and waist circumference by 4.4%; these study investigators also cited the ability of green tea constituents to reduce the activity of the lipase enzyme as a mechanism behind the observed metabolic benefits (Chantre 2002).

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