Menopausal transition with declining estrogen levels significantly affects the physiological properties of women and consequently contributes to a series of medical conditions, including obesity. Obesity is a crucial risk factor associated with cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus, and breast cancer. Increasing dietary protein content improves satiety and energy expenditure. Thus, we hypothesize that supplementing with collagen, a common dietary protein, may alleviate menopause-induced obesity.
We used ovariectomized (OVX) rats to mimic a menopausal human. The bodyweight of OVX rats significantly increased compared with that of sham-operated rats (P<0.05), but uterus weight was decreased. Adipocyte size in perigonadal adipose tissue also increased (P<0.05).
By contrast, OVX rats supplemented with aqueous collagen hydrolysate (2.5 mg/mL) exhibited significant attenuation in body weight gain and adipocyte enlargement (P<0.05), but an insignificant change in uterus weight. Further investigation indicated that collagen hydrolysate supplementation insignificantly affected the levels of dorsal fat, serum total cholesterol, and serum triacylglycerol. Levels of serum biochemical factors, calcium, phosphorus, and glucose were also insignificantly altered by collagen hydrolysate supplementation.
Collagen hydrolysate supplementation reduced body weight gain and adipocyte enlargement in response to ovariectomy but slightly affected blood lipids, calcium, and glucose in both sham-operated and OVX rats. Collagen hydrolysate supplementation is beneficial in ameliorating estrogen deficiency-induced obesity and its associated risk factors.
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