It sounds almost too good to be true, but Dr. Raylene Reimer, a researcher at the University of Calgary, Faculty of Kinesiology, believes she may have found an important weapon in the war against obesity.
Reimer and her colleagues are launching the first human trials anywhere to assess a promising natural fibre, which has already been shown to be effective in tests involving genetically obese rats.
"It may not be the magic bullet," Reimer says, "but in all likelihood this will likely be one factor that people can change in their life to help achieve a healthy body weight. It won't cure obesity or cause people to drop half their body weight -- not even our strongest obesity drugs can do that -- but we believe it could help."
The fibre is called oligo fructose. "It's not a chemical or a drug. In fact it's a food product that is already being used in things like yogurt, cereal and baby food. We have found in a previous study with rats that the fibre increases the levels of a satiety hormone called glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) in the body and increases a gene in the intestines that helps the body to create more GLP-1."
In a study with genetically obese rats, Reimer and U of C PhD Student Jill Parnell found that consuming the natural fibre helped the rats to significantly reduce their food intake and improved their blood lipid profile.
The new study will involve human subjects for the first time. The researchers are looking for 50 overweight, but otherwise healthy individuals living in Calgary, Canada. The subjects would be required to take a dietary supplement over a three-month period while making no other lifestyle changes. Participants' body composition will be tracked using cutting-edge technology to determine their body fat ratios.
"What we have found so far in our animal studies has been very encouraging," says Reimer. "Another short study done by some Belgian researchers also indicates that the fibre will work for people, but we really won't know until we complete this detailed, long-term study."
Gregory Harris | EurekAlert!
Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT
Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
08.12.2016 | Health and Medicine
08.12.2016 | Life Sciences