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J Nutr. 1998 Jan;128(1):35-43.

Dietary amylose-amylopectin starch content affects glucose and lipid metabolism in adipocytes of normal and diabetic rats.

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Department of Diabetes, INSERM U341, University of Pierre et Marie Curie, Hôtel-Dieu Hospital, 75004 Paris, France.


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of the chronic consumption of two starches, characterized by different glycemic indices and amylose-amylopectin content, on glucose metabolism in rat epididymal adipocytes. The two chosen starches were from mung bean (32% amylose) and cornstarch (0.5% amylose). The alpha-amylase digestibility was higher for the waxy cornstarch than that of the mung bean starch (60 +/- 4 vs. 45 +/- 3%, mean +/- SEM, respectively). The glycemic index of the waxy cornstarch diet (575 g starch /kg diet) was higher than that of the mung bean starch diet (107 +/- 7 vs. 67 +/- 5%, P < 0.01) when measured in vivo in two groups of normal rats (n = 9). In a subsequent study, normal and diabetic (streptozotocin-injected on d 2 of life) male Sprague-Dawley rats (18 per group) consumed a diet containing 575 g starch/kg diet as either waxy cornstarch or mung bean starch. After 3 wk, food intake, epididymal fat pad weights, and plasma glucose, insulin and triglyceride concentrations did not differ between diet groups. Adipocyte diameter was smaller in rats that consumed mung bean starch compared with those that consumed the waxy cornstarch diet (P < 0.01). The mung bean diet increased maximal insulin-stimulated 14C-glucose oxidation (% of basal values, P < 0. 05). In contrast, incorporation of 14C-glucose into total lipids was significantly lower in rats that consumed the mung bean diet (P < 0. 05). We conclude that in both normal and diabetic rats, the chronic replacement of a high glycemic index starch by a low glycemic index one in a mixed diet increases insulin-stimulated glucose oxidation, decreases glucose incorporation into total lipids and decreases epididymal adipocyte diameter. Thus, the type of starch mixed into the diet has important metabolic consequences at the cellular level in both normal and diabetic rats.

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