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Raspberry fruit extract found to lower weight gain and increase ambulatory activity


Researchers at Rutgers University in New Jersey tested whether phenolic-enriched raspberry extracts, compared with raspberry ketone, can promote resilience toward metabolic alterations caused by an obesity-inducing diet. Their study was published in the journal Nutrition Research.

  • Red raspberries (Rubus idaeus) contain numerous phenolic compounds that provide health benefits.
  • Raspberry ketone (4-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-2-butanone), a flavoring agent, is the primary aroma and flavor phenolic found in raspberries.
  • In rodents, raspberry ketone consumption leads to weight loss.
  • To determine if raspberry fruit extracts have the same effect, the researchers gave mice placed on a high-fat diet daily oral doses of either a vehicle (VEH) containing propylene glycol, water and dimethyl sulfoxide; low-concentration raspberry extract (REL); high-concentration raspberry extract (REH); or raspberry ketone (RK).
  • They reported that after four weeks, REH and RK reduced body weight gain (five to nine percent) and white adipose mass (20 percent) compared with VEH.
  • REH also up-regulated hepatic gene expression of heme oxygenase-1 and lipoprotein lipase compared with VEH.
  • Indirect calorimetry revealed that the treatments all reduced respiratory exchange ratio (CO2 production to O2 consumption), suggesting increased fat oxidation.
  • REH increased total ambulatory behavior and energy expenditure/lean mass in mice compared with REL.
  • The treatments caused no differences in cumulative intake, meal patterns or hypothalamic feed-related gene expression.

Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that raspberry ketone and phenolic-enriched raspberry extract can prevent weight gain via different mechanisms that stop excess fat accumulation following exposure to a high-fat diet.

Journal Reference:

Kshatriya D, Li X, Giunta GM, Yuan B, Zhao D, Simon JE, Wu Q, Bello NT. PHENOLIC-ENRICHED RASPBERRY FRUIT EXTRACT (RUBUS IDAEUS) RESULTED IN LOWER WEIGHT GAIN, INCREASED AMBULATORY ACTIVITY, AND ELEVATED HEPATIC LIPOPROTEIN LIPASE AND HEME OXYGENASE-1 EXPRESSION IN MALE MICE FED A HIGH-FAT DIET. Nutrition Research. August 2019;68:19–33. DOI: 10.1016/j.nutres.2019.05.005



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