Lifelong exposure to dietary isoflavones reduces risk of obesity in ovariectomized Wistar rats

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SCOPE: Traditional Asian diet rich in soy isoflavones (ISOs) is discussed to be linked to a lower obesity prevalence. In lifelong and short-term exposure scenarios we investigated effects of an ISO-rich diet on the body composition and development of obesity in female rats.

METHODS AND RESULTS: Female Wistar rats grew up on ISO-free or ISO-rich control diet (CON ISO: 467 mg/kg diet). Starting postnatal day 83, ovariectomized and intact animals received high calorie Western diet (WD) in the absence or presence of ISO (WD ISO: 431 mg/kg diet) for 12 weeks to induce obesity or maintained on respective control diet (CON). One group starting ISO exposure after ovariectomy mimics short-term ISO exposure in postmenopausal Western women. Lifelong but not short-term ISO exposure resulted in reduced body weight, visceral fat mass, serum leptin, and smaller adipocytes. ISO decreased hepatic SREBP-1c, ACC, FAS, and PPARγ mRNA expression in nonobese animals. Moreover, ovariectomy reduced skeletal muscle weight, which was antagonized by both short-term and lifelong ISO exposure.

CONCLUSION: Our results indicate that in female rats lifelong but not short-term ISO intake reduces the risk to develop obesity. Furthermore, lifelong and short-term ISO exposure may antagonize loss of skeletal muscle mass induced by ovariectomy.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMolecular Nutrition & Food Research
Issue number12
Pages (from-to)2407–2418
Publication statusPublished - 08.09.2015

ID: 1536798


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