Combining Fuxocxanthin and CLA to Target Fat Mass
By Chad Kerksick, PhD
Jul 11, 2012
A number of compounds are being investigated for their ability to favorably influence obesity and its associated negative health outcomes. Conjugated linoleic acid is a group of geometric and positional isomers of the essential fatty acid linoleic acid that has been considered for several years for its ability to favorably impact various aspects of health and body composition.
Numerous studies performed in cell culture, animals and humans continually show modest positive outcomes in fat mass and lean when CLA is introduced in the diet. Fucoxathin is a nutrient extracted from the brown seaweed plant and recently has been considered for a number of positive health functions. For example, studies in cell cultures and animals have indicated that fucoxanthin may favorably impart effects related to the accumulation of fat tissue on various parts of the body while also improving triglyceride, cholesterol and glucose levels in the blood. While favorable outcomes abound for both CLA and fucoxanthin, no studies to date have examined the impact of combining them on their ability to favorably impact body composition and related health markers. Recently, Chinese scientists published results from a study performed in laboratory rats. One group of the rats ingested a control diet that provided 15% fat while three other groups consumed the same diet with either a low-dose (0.083 mg/kg body mass) or high dose of fucoxanthin (0.176 mg/kg body mass) or a combination of the lower dose of fucoxanthin and CLA (0.15 grams of CLA/kg body mass). Each diet combination was fed to the animals for almost 8 weeks; the rats were then assessed for changes in fat mass, health related markers in the blood such as triglycerides, total cholesterol, leptin and glucose concentrations and the expression of several genes related to fat metabolism (Hu, Li et al. 2012). When compared to the control group, the combination of low-dose fucoxanthin and CLA significantly suppressed the increases seen in body weight and fat mass. Increases in fat mass were seen but not to as great of an extent with either dose of fucoxanthin. Increases in fat droplets in the liver and surrounding the kidneys were decreased in all groups containing fucoxanthin and CLA when compared to changes seen in the control groups. In a similar fashion, improvements in total cholesterol were found with a high dose of fucoxanthin while improvements in blood fats (triglycerides) and leptin (a key obesity hormone linked to energy intake) were again seen in all groups which contained fucoxanthin and CLA when compared to the control group. Lastly, diets providing either low- or high doses of fucoxanthin or a combination of fucoxanthin and CLA sharply improved the expression of several genes that control various aspects of fat breakdown and metabolism. Overall results from the first study to examine the combined impact of fucoxanthin and CLA suggest that the addition of either nutrition can improve fat accumulation, health markers in the blood and key genes related to fat metabolism.
Hu, X., Y. Li, et al. (2012). "Combination of fucoxanthin and conjugated linoleic acid attenuates body weight gain and improves lipid metabolism in high-fat diet-induced obese rats." Arch Biochem Biophys 519(1): 59-65.
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