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Effect of amaranth oil (Amaranthus cruentus BRS-Alegria)on the lipid metabolism of hypercolesterolemic hamsters.

Grant number: 08/07562-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2009
Effective date (End): March 31, 2009
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Nutrition
Principal researcher:José Alfredo Gomes Arêas
Grantee:Luíla Ívini Andrade de Castro
Home Institution: Faculdade de Saúde Pública (FSP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Introduction: Amaranth is a pseudo cereal of high nutritive value and is considered a functional food due to its ability in lowering blood cholesterol. The lipid content of amaranth grains is superior to the most common cereals, with high amounts of unsaturated fatty acids and esqualene, a possible bioactive compound in amaranth cholesterol lowering property. Objective: To verify the effect of diet with amaranth oil on lipid metabolism of hypercholesterolemic hamsters. Methodology: Amaranth oil will be obtained by supercritical CO2 extraction at 50ºC and 200bar. The hamsters will have their cholesterol increased by diet during a three week period. After that they will be distributed into three groups, which will receive for four weeks: diet with amaranth oil, diet with corn oil (control), and diet with corn oil added of esqualene (in the same amount of that on amaranth oil). All diets will be prepared according to the established by NRC and will have the same energy, the same protein, the same lipid and the same energy contents. Plasma concentrations of total cholesterol, triacylglycerols, HDL, VLDL + LDL cholesterol will be determined. Cholesterol and billiary acids will be determined in the animal feces and histological exams will be performed in the animal livers.

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