Less visceral fat with slimming supplement Kudzu
Researchers at the Japanese health-food manufacturer Toyo Shinyaku [toyoshinyaku.co.jp] have developed a new slimming supplement based on Kudzu – scientific name Puerariae thomsonii. Kudzu supplements on the market at present contain extracts of Kudzu roots, but the new supplement contains extracts of Kudzu flowers. Recent studies suggest they can help weight loss.
The Toyo Shinyaku study that slimming supplements manufacturers will find most interesting was published a few months ago in Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry. Subjects aged from 20 to 65 were given a capsule containing 200 or 300 mg Kudzu extract or a placebo every day for 12 weeks.
The researchers used a water-based extract consisting of almost 5 percent tectoridin and over 8 percent tectorigenin 7-O-xylosylglucoside. Both substances are converted in the body into tectorigenin [structural formula shown at the top of the page], which is thought to be the active ingredient in Kudzu.
The subjects' amount of subcutaneous fat remained the same during the experiment, as the figures below show. But the amount of visceral fat decreased in the experimental groups, as did their waist measurement. No side effects were observed.
How the new Kudzu supplements work is elucidated in an animal study that the researchers published last year in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. [Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012;2012:272710.]
In that study the Japanese got their lab animals to gain weight by putting them on a high fat diet. When the diet consisted of 5 percent Kudzu extract, the activity of fat-burning genes in the liver and brown fat tissues increased, and the activity of genes that cause the body to lay down fat decreased.
Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2012;76(8):1511-7.
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