A recent study at the University of Calgary have discovered that the fibre found in bananas and onions could help boost the metabolism and help with weight loss.
What did the study involve?
In the study published in the journal Obesity a team of scientists looked at how the metabolism of rats differed when given a supplement containing oligofructose, a natural dietary fibre found in onions and bananas.
The rats were allowed to eat foods high in both sugar and fat yet those who consumed the supplement containing the fibre gained a third less weight, with even those with a genetic predisposition towards obesity also seeing similar results.
Nina Cluny, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the HBI and the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology had this to say about the findings:
“The striking finding was they both gained far less weight than controls.”
How does oligofructose work?
The dietary fibre oligofructose is said to help please the friendly bacteria (microbiota) that reside in your digestive tract.
This in turn causes a release of appetite-curbing hormones that will reduce the amount of weight gained, even when eating a high fat and sugar diet. As shown by the results of the tests undertaken on the rats.
Has this been tested on humans?
Back in 2009 another study (this time on 48 humans) revealed that those given oligofructose lost an average of 1 kg of a 12 week period, with those not given the supplement gaining weight.
The co-author of the recent study, who was also the lead author of the 2009 study, Dr Raylene Reimer had this to say:
“It is not a ‘magic bullet’. If you take prebiotic fibre, it doesn’t cause you to lose 100 pounds in six months.”
However, the results are initially impressive and should indicate the possible further tests should be undertaken.