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Open AccessArticle

Long-Term Dietary Intake of Chia Seed Is Associated with Increased Bone Mineral Content and Improved Hepatic and Intestinal Morphology in Sprague-Dawley Rats

1
Center for Health Sciences Research, School of Medicine & Health Sciences, Universidad Adventista del Plata, Libertador San Martín, Entre Ríos 3103, Argentina
2
Institute for Food Science and Nutrition, Universidad Adventista del Plata, Libertador San Martín, Entre Ríos 3103, Argentina
3
Department of Public Health, Nutrition and Wellness, School of Health Professions, Andrews University, Berrien Springs, MI 49104, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2018, 10(7), 922; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10070922
Received: 26 June 2018 / Revised: 12 July 2018 / Accepted: 18 July 2018 / Published: 19 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Intake and Musculoskeletal Health)
Chia seeds (Salvia hispanica) provide an unusually high content of α-linolenic acid with several potential health benefits, but few studies have examined the long-term intake of n-3 fatty acid-rich plant foods such as chia. In this work, we investigated some of the effects of a diet containing 10% chia seeds versus a conventional isocaloric diet for 10 and 13 months on body measurements, musculoskeletal system, the liver, and the intestines of 20 male Sprague-Dawley rats assigned into two groups. The n-6/n-3 ratios for the control and chia diets were 7.46 and 1.07, respectively. For the first 10 months of the diet, the body parameters and weights were similar, but at 13 months, the bone mineral content (BMC) of the chia-fed rats was significantly higher than that of the controls whether in total or proximal areas of the left tibia. Also, significant positive correlations were found between the age of the chia group and the bone mineral density, BMC, weight of the musculoskeletal system, final body weight, and skin weight. Liver and intestinal examinations showed improved morphology associated with lower lipid deposit in hepatocytes and increased intestinal muscle layers and crypt size in the chia group. This study provides new data suggesting the potential benefits associated with the long-term intake of chia seeds. View Full-Text
Keywords: chia seed; long-term dietary intake; musculoskeletal system; bone densitometry analysis; liver; intestine; Sprague-Dawley chia seed; long-term dietary intake; musculoskeletal system; bone densitometry analysis; liver; intestine; Sprague-Dawley
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Montes Chañi, E.M.; Pacheco, S.O.S.; Martínez, G.A.; Freitas, M.R.; Ivona, J.G.; Ivona, J.A.; Craig, W.J.; Pacheco, F.J. Long-Term Dietary Intake of Chia Seed Is Associated with Increased Bone Mineral Content and Improved Hepatic and Intestinal Morphology in Sprague-Dawley Rats. Nutrients 2018, 10, 922.

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