Oral administration of green algae, Euglena gracilis, inhibits hyperglycemia in OLETF rats, a model of spontaneous type 2 diabetes
In the present study, the effects of Euglena and paramylon on hyperglycemia were examined in Otsuka Long–Evans Tokushima fatty (OLETF; type 2 diabetes mellitus model) rats. OLETF rats were fed an AIN-93 M diet containing cellulose, Euglena, or paramylon for 10 weeks. Long–Evans Tokushima Otsuka (LETO) rats were used as nondiabetic controls. An oral glucose-tolerance test (OGTT) was performed at 0 and 10 weeks. OLETF control rats were obese because of bulimia and showed abdominal fat accumulation and hyperglycemia. Euglena supplementation improved hyperglycemia and decreased food intake, body weight gain, and abdominal fat. However, there were no changes in the paramylon-supplemented group compared to the OLETF control group. Triglyceride concentrations in the serum and liver were lower in Euglena-supplemented rats than in OLETF control rats. There was a correlation between hepatic triglyceride concentration and the area under the curve (AUC) of OGTT at 10 weeks. This suggests that the improvement in glycemic control in the Euglena-supplemented group may depend on substances other than paramylon present in Euglena.