Plants and plant products could reduce obesity
By Ashwani Kumar
| September 17th 2010 05:04 AM | Print
Suddenly the prevalence of obesity in the last 25 years in rich and not so rich nations cant be attributed to the genetic factors.
At present more than one billion adults worldwide are overweight and at least 300 million of them are clinically obese (WHO 2009).
Among the two strategies to reduce obesity are (1) reduce the levels of pancreatic lipase which may help in reducing the absorption. (2) Reduce the appetite .
Both are not the correct approach and could have side effects. Its not to reduce intake or absorption but it is to take proper food . Plants listed by Yun (2010) are important and already in use in traditional medicines.
Recently the presentation indicated that plants and microbes and secondary metabolite production capacity are interrelated. Members of the Bacteroidetes are found in the intestinal tracts of many warm-blooded animals. The Firmicutes like Lactobacillus, Mycoplasma, Bacillus and Clostridium increase in obese mice versus lean mice. Streptococcus pyogenes is also a member of the Firmicutes. Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron is one of the most abundant organisms.
It has been pointed out that microbiome changes with body mass index (BMI) of an individual. The degree to which these changes correlate with energy harvest remains to be established. Intake of products could facilitate the other.
The recent publication “Possible anti-obesity therapeutics from nature - A review Phytochemistry, Volume 71, Issues 14-15, October 2010, Pages 1625-1641
Jong Won Yun”
Probably there is complex interaction between plants, “metagenome” and obesity. The concept of human ‘metagenome’ suggests there is a composite of Homo sapiens genes and genes in the genomes of the trillions of microbes that colonize the body. This means as the researchers have established we are composite of species: eukaryotic, bacterial, archaeal.
Moving away from vegetables, fruits in diet and taking recourse of fast food might have changed the “ metagenome “ resulting in imbalance of microbiome in the body. I am not a doctor and nor I have studied obesity but what I gather from literature that at least four factors interact :
Metagenome, Plants, enzymes secretions of host, enzyme secretions of the metageome and some unknown factors interacting in some unknown ways.
Doctors will provide a correct picture but more we take selected food or rather recommended food better are chances of regulating our gut microflora which in turn shall regulate our BMI. Microbial fermentation of dietary polysaccharides that cannot be digested by the host subsequent intestinal absorption of monosaccharides and fatty acids
Ayruvedic medicines have relied on herbs for reducing the obesity.