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Dietary fibre and acetate for appetite suppression

Dietary fibre and acetate for appetite suppression

New research has shown that when dietary fibre is digested by the bacteria in your colon a compound known as acetate is released in large quantities.

It is this compound that will then send a signal to your brain to tell it that you are full and to stop eating.

This research that was published in Nature Communications confirms the well known belief that dietary fibre is helpful for weight loss, and the hope is that the research can be used to create an appetite suppressing product.

Professor Gary Frost, of the Imperial College London had this to say about the research:

“The major challenge is to develop an approach that will deliver the amount of acetate needed to suppress  appetite but in a form that is acceptable and safe for humans.”

“Acetate is only active for a short amount of time in the body, so if we focused on a purely acetate-based product we would need to find a way to drip feed it and mimic its slow release in the gut.”

“Another option is to focus on the fibre and manipulate it so that it produces more acetate than normal and less fibre is needed to have the same effect, providing a more palatable and comfortable option than massively increasing the amount of fibre in our diet.”

“Developing these approaches will be difficult but it is a good challenge to have and we are looking forward to researching possible ways of using acetate to address health issues around weight gain.”

What did the study involve?

The study looked at how the dietary fibre inulin found in chicory and sugar beets that were then added to cereal bars affected mice fed on a high fat diet.

Those mice that consumed the inulin ate less and gained less weight than the mice who ate the same diet without the inulin.

Is this the diet miracle we are looking for?

Although this research is promising, it is still early days and it may take some time before a product reaches the market.

In the meantime if you are overweight and struggling with overeating there are things that you can do.

For instance you could:

  • Drink water during your meal
  • Stop eating snack bags, as these are shown to cause overeating
  • Limit your meals with friends
  • Stop using food as a reward
  • Eat slower to give your brain chance to realise you are getting full

There are plenty of ways to combat your weight issues, you don’t have to wait for a ‘magic pill’ to help you achieve your goals.

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