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Effects of the whole seed and a protein isolate of faba bean (Vicia faba) on the cholesterol metabolism of hypercholesterolaemic rats

  • M. Teresa Macarulla (a1), César Medina (a1), M. Aránzazu De Diego (a1), M. Chávarri (a1), M. Ángeles Zulet (a2), J. Alfredo Martínez (a2), Catherine Nöel-Suberville (a3), Paul Higueret (a3) and María P. Portillo (a1)...

Abstract

The aim of the present work was to analyse the hypocholesterolaemic efficiency of a Vicia faba-protein isolate in relation to the intact legume. In addition, the mechanisms underlying the effects of this isolate were investigated. Hypercholesterolaemic rats were divided into three groups (n 10×3) and fed high-fat diets rich in cholesterol-containing casein, whole seeds of Vicia faba or the protein isolate of faba beans as protein source, for 2 weeks ad libitum. The protein isolate was prepared by isoelectric precipitation and spray dried. Analyses of serum, liver and faeces, as well as of the activity of hepatic 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl (HMG)-CoA reductase, were assessed by enzymatic methods. The rats fed on Vicia faba diets showed significantly lower body weights and energy intakes than rats fed on casein diets. The whole-seed diet induced a significant reduction in plasma triacylglycerol. Feeding rats on diets containing faba bean seeds, or the protein isolate, induced a significant decrease in plasma (LDL+VLDL)-cholesterol but not in HDL-cholesterol. Hepatic cholesterol and triacylglycerol were also reduced. The hypocholesterolaemic effects of Vicia faba were not the result of a reduction in cholesterol synthesis as assessed from HMG-CoA reductase activity, but the result of an increase in steroid faecal excretion. The faba bean-protein isolate obtained under our experimental conditions was useful in improving the metabolic alterations induced by feeding with a hypercholesterolaemic diet compared with casein. The effectiveness of the whole seeds was higher than that of the protein isolate.

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Corresponding author

*Corresponding author: Dr M. Teresa Macarulla, fax +34 945 130756, email knpmaarm@vc.ehu.es

References

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Keywords

Effects of the whole seed and a protein isolate of faba bean (Vicia faba) on the cholesterol metabolism of hypercholesterolaemic rats

  • M. Teresa Macarulla (a1), César Medina (a1), M. Aránzazu De Diego (a1), M. Chávarri (a1), M. Ángeles Zulet (a2), J. Alfredo Martínez (a2), Catherine Nöel-Suberville (a3), Paul Higueret (a3) and María P. Portillo (a1)...

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