Antiobesity effects of Kaempferia parviflora in spontaneously obese type II diabetic mice
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Kaempferia parviflora Wall. Ex Baker (KP) has been used as a folk medicine in Laos and Thailand to lower blood glucose levels, improve blood flow, and increase vitality. This study investigated the preventive effects of KP on obesity and its downstream symptoms (various metabolic disorders) using Tsumura, Suzuki, Obese Diabetes (TSOD) mice, a multifactorial genetic disease animal model in which metabolic diseases develop spontaneously, similar to metabolic syndrome in humans, and Tsumura, Suzuki, Non-Obesity (TSNO) mice as the corresponding control mice. When feed that was mixed with KP (1 or 3%) was given ad libitum to TSOD and TSNO mice for 8 weeks, body weight increase, visceral fat accumulation, lipid metabolism abnormalities, hyperinsulinemia, glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, hypertension, and peripheral neuropathy were suppressed in TSOD mice, but no marked differences were observed in TSNO mice. Because KP had preventive effects on metabolic diseases, including antiobesity effects, only in obese animals, we propose that KP will be extremely valuable as a medicine or component of food in alternative health care.