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Effect of Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum Linn.) Supplementation on Metabolic Parameters and Liver Enzymes in Young Overweight and Obese Subjects


Ocimum sanctum Linn. (also known as Tulsi) is a sacred Indian plant, the beneficial role of which, in obesity and diabetes is described traditionally. This is a randomized, parallel group, open label pilot study to investigate the effect of O. sanctum on metabolic and biochemical parameters in thirty overweight/obese subjects, divided into two groups A and B. Group A (n = 16) received one 250 mg capsule of Tulsi (O. sanctum) extract twice daily in empty stomach for 8 weeks and group B (n = 14) received no intervention. Statistically significant improvements in the values of serum triglycerides (p = 0.019); low density lipoprotein (p = 0.001); high density lipoprotein (p = 0.001); very low density lipoprotein (p = 0.019); Body Mass Index, BMI (p = 0.005); plasma insulin (p = 0.021) and insulin resistance (p = 0.049) were observed after 8 weeks in the O. sanctum intervention group. The improvement in HDL-C in the intervention group when compared to the control group was also statistically significant (p = 0.037). There was no significant alteration of the liver enzymes SGOT and SGPT in both the intervention (p = 0.141; p = 0.074) and control arms (p = 0.102; p = 0.055) respectively. These observations clearly indicate the beneficial effects of O. sanctum on various biochemical parameters in young overweight/obese subjects.

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This study was supported at least in part by the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar. We sincerely acknowledge the role of Mr. Sujit Biswal and Mrs. Jayalakshmi Sahoo, technicians in the Biochemistry laboratory, for their support in sample collection and testing.

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Correspondence to Debapriya Bandyopadhyay.

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Satapathy, S., Das, N., Bandyopadhyay, D. et al. Effect of Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum Linn.) Supplementation on Metabolic Parameters and Liver Enzymes in Young Overweight and Obese Subjects. Ind J Clin Biochem 32, 357–363 (2017).

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  • Ocimum sanctum
  • Obesity
  • Serum lipid
  • Insulin resistance