Body weight, plasma glucose, insulin, leptin levels and HOMA-IR values were significantly lower in the BM-fed HFD group when compared to the HFD group. BM supplementation significantly increased IRS-2, IR β, PI 3K and GLUT4 protein abundance in skeletal muscle, as well as phosphorylation of IRS-1, Akt1 and Akt2 when compared with HFD (P<.05 and P<.01). BM also significantly reduced muscle lipid content in the HFD mice. BM extract greatly increased glucose uptake and enhanced insulin signaling in L6 myotubes.There is however two major caveat to these findings. Firstly, mice ain't a particularly good model for predictions concerning the effect of supplements that are added to a high fat diet. And secondly, even if we would see similar results in human beings, the most obvious conclusion one MUST (but obviously nobody does) draw from the results of this study is that without supplementation the low fat diet, i.e. the group of mice that consumed a diet that is appropriate to their genetic make-up, gained the least amount of weight, had the lowest leptin levels and the best insulin sensitivity.
|Figure 1: Insulin levels of the mice on a low fat diet (LFD), a high fat diet (HFD) and a high fat diet supplemented with bitter melon extract (BM)|