Previous studies showed that intake of yacon or some lactic acid bacteria was able to inhibit the development of diabetes mellitus, by reducing glucose and associated symptoms, for example, the lipid profile.
The purpose of this study was to assess the consumption influence of a potential symbiotic product of soybean and yacon extract and fermented Enterococcus faecium CRL 183 and Lactobacillus helveticus ssp jugurti 416 in reducing blood glucose and lipid levels in an animal model.
Diabetes mellitus was chemically induced by intraperitoneal administration of streptozotocin (50 mg/kg body weight). The rats were divided into four groups (n=10): GI – non-diabetic animals that received only a standard chow diet (negative control), GII – diabetic animals that received only chow diet (positive control), GIII – diabetic animals that received the chow diet + 1 mL/kg body weight/day of soybean and yacon unfermented product, GIV – diabetic rats that received the chow diet + 1 mL/kg body weight/day of soybean and yacon fermented product. There was a seven-week treatment period and the following parameters were evaluated: animal body weight, food and water intake, blood glucose, enzyme activities of aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT), triglycerides levels, total cholesterol, HDL-C, non-HDL-C. Cell viability of the fermented product was checked weekly for a seven-week period.
The product average viable population was 108-109 CFU/mL, by ensuring both the rods and cocci regular intake. No difference was observed between the water and feed intake and body weight of groups that received unfermented and fermented products and the untreated diabetic group. The same was observed for the blood glucose and AST and ALT activities, while some improvement was observed for a lipid profile, represented by reduction of triglycerides level by 15.07% and 33.50% in groups III and IV, respectively, and an increase of 23.70% in HDL-C level for group IV.
The results showed that the ingestion of a potential symbiotic product was neither able to promote improvement in some of the disease symptoms, nor reduce blood glucose. However, a positive effect on triglycerides levels and HDL-cholesterol was observed in the groups that received the unfermented product containing yacon extract and the fermented product with Enterococcus faecium CRL 183, as well as Lactobacillus helveticus ssp jugurti 416 and yacon extract (symbiotic product).