Amelioration of hyperglycemia and associated metabolic abnormalities by a combination of fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) seeds and onion (Allium cepa) in experimental diabetes

Seetur R Pradeep, Krishnapura Srinivasan
Journal of Basic and Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology 2017 September 26, 28 (5): 493-505

BACKGROUND: Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) seeds and onion (Allium cepa) are independently known to have antidiabetic effects through different mechanisms. The beeneficial influence of a combination of dietary fenugreek seeds and onion on hyperglycemia and its associated metabolic abnormalities were evaluated in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats.

METHODS: Diabetes was experimentally induced with streptozotocin and diabetic rats were fed with 10% fenugreek or 3% onion or their combination for 6 weeks.

RESULTS: These dietary interventions significantly countered hyperglycemia, partially improved peripheral insulin resistance and impaired insulin secretion, reduced β-cell mass and markedly reversed the abnormalities in plasma albumin, urea, creatinine, glycated hemoglobin and advanced glycation end products in diabetic rats. These beneficial effects were highest in the fenugreek+onion group. Diabetic rats with these dietary interventions excreted lesser glucose, albumin, urea and creatinine, which were accompanied by improved body weights compared with the diabetic controls. These dietary interventions produced ameliorative effects on pancreatic pathology as reflected by near-normal islet cells, restored glycogen and collagen fiber deposition in diabetic rats.

CONCLUSIONS: This study documented the hypoglycemic and insulinotropic effects of dietary fenugreek and onion, which were associated with countering of metabolic abnormalities and pancreatic pathology. It may be strategic to derive maximum nutraceutical antidiabetic benefits from these functional food ingredients by consuming them together.

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