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Clin Hemorheol Microcirc. 2013 Jan 1;54(1):23-31. doi: 10.3233/CH-2012-1561.

Effect of a high-fructose diet on glucose tolerance, plasma lipid and hemorheological parameters during oral contraceptive administration in female rats.

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  • 1Department of Physiology, College of Health Sciences, University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Nigeria.


Oral contraceptive (OC) use and increased fructose feeding have been associated with altered cardiometabolic effects. The effect of increased dietary fructose during OC use on cardiometabolic parameters is unknown. We investigated the effects of a high-fructose diet on body weight gain, fasting blood glucose, glucose tolerance, plasma lipid and hemorheological parameters in female rats treated with a combination of OC steroids (norgestrel/ethinyl estradiol; NEE). Rats were given (p.o.) vehicle, high-dose NEE (10.0 μg norgestrel/1.0 μg ethinyl estradiol) or low-dose NEE (1.0 μg norgestrel/0.1 μg ethinyl estradiol) with or without high dietary fructose daily for 6 weeks. Results demonstrated that high-dose NEE but not low-dose NEE treatment led to significant increases in hematocrit, blood viscosity, and decreases in body weight gain, glucose tolerance, and plasma HDL-cholesterol level. Both NEE treatments resulted in significant increases in plasma viscosity and triglyceride. Increased dietary fructose without NEE treatment produced significant increases in fasting blood glucose, hematocrit, blood and plasma viscosities, while increased dietary fructose significantly potentiated the effects on blood and plasma viscosities observed during NEE treatment. Conversely, the effects of NEE treatment on body weight gain, glucose tolerance, plasma triglyceride and HDL-cholesterol were significantly attenuated. In conclusion, the results indicate that increase in dietary fructose may worsen abnormal blood rheology. The results also demonstrate that increased dietary fructose may not impact negatively on glucose and lipid metabolisms during OC use. The findings imply that fructose-enriched diet might be an important consideration during OC use regarding blood rheological properties.

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