Obesity, along with its related complications, is a serious health problem worldwide. Many studies reported the anti-diabetic effect of phlorizin, while little is known about its anti-obesity effect. We investigated the beneficial effects of phlorizin on obesity and its complications, including diabetes and inflammation in obese animal. Male C57BL/6J mice were divided into three groups and fed their respective experimental diets for 16 weeks: a normal diet (ND, 5% fat, w
), high-fat diet (HFD, 20% fat, w
), or HFD supplemented with phlorizin (PH, 0.02%, w
). The findings revealed that the PH group had significantly decreased visceral and total white adipose tissue (WAT) weights, and adipocyte size compared to the HFD. Plasma and hepatic lipids profiles also improved in the PH group. The decreased levels of hepatic lipids in PH were associated with decreased activities of enzymes involved in hepatic lipogenesis, cholesterol synthesis and esterification. The PH also suppressed plasma pro-inflammatory adipokines levels such as leptin, adipsin, tumor necrosis factor-α, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, interferon-γ, and interleukin-6, and prevented HFD-induced collagen accumulation in the liver and WAT. Furthermore, the PH supplementation also decreased plasma glucose, insulin, glucagon, and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance levels. In conclusion, phlorizin is beneficial for preventing diet-induced obesity, hepatic steatosis, inflammation, and fibrosis, as well as insulin resistance.
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