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Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(2), 788-805; doi:10.3390/md13020788

Seaweed Supplements Normalise Metabolic, Cardiovascular and Liver Responses in High-Carbohydrate, High-Fat Fed Rats

Centre for Systems Biology, University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba 4350, Australia
MACRO—the Centre for Macroalgal Resources and Biotechnology, and College of Marine & Environmental Sciences, James Cook University, Townsville, QLD 4811, Australia
School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane 4072, Australia
School of Health and Wellbeing, The University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba 4350, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Constantina Nasopoulou
Received: 2 October 2014 / Revised: 22 December 2014 / Accepted: 21 January 2015 / Published: 2 February 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Functional Food Products - Cardiovascular Diseases)
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Increased seaweed consumption may be linked to the lower incidence of metabolic syndrome in eastern Asia. This study investigated the responses to two tropical green seaweeds, Ulva ohnoi (UO) and Derbesia tenuissima (DT), in a rat model of human metabolic syndrome. Male Wistar rats (330–340 g) were fed either a corn starch-rich diet or a high-carbohydrate, high-fat diet with 25% fructose in drinking water, for 16 weeks. High-carbohydrate, high-fat diet-fed rats showed the signs of metabolic syndrome leading to abdominal obesity, cardiovascular remodelling and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Food was supplemented with 5% dried UO or DT for the final 8 weeks only. UO lowered total final body fat mass by 24%, systolic blood pressure by 29 mmHg, and improved glucose utilisation and insulin sensitivity. In contrast, DT did not change total body fat mass but decreased plasma triglycerides by 38% and total cholesterol by 17%. UO contained 18.1% soluble fibre as part of 40.9% total fibre, and increased magnesium, while DT contained 23.4% total fibre, essentially as insoluble fibre. UO was more effective in reducing metabolic syndrome than DT, possibly due to the increased intake of soluble fibre and magnesium. View Full-Text
Keywords: obesity; hypertension; fatty liver; tropical seaweeds; soluble fibre obesity; hypertension; fatty liver; tropical seaweeds; soluble fibre

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Kumar, S.A.; Magnusson, M.; Ward, L.C.; Paul, N.A.; Brown, L. Seaweed Supplements Normalise Metabolic, Cardiovascular and Liver Responses in High-Carbohydrate, High-Fat Fed Rats. Mar. Drugs 2015, 13, 788-805.

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