'Multiple benefits over a wide range of metabolic functions': RCT supports East Asian herb’s weight benefits

By Stephen Daniells contact

- Last updated on GMT

© bymuratdeniz / Getty Images
© bymuratdeniz / Getty Images

Related tags: Weight management

Daily supplementation with an extract from Gynostemma pentaphyllum may reduce BMI, fat mass, and fat distribution in overweight and obese adults, compared to placebo, says a new study.

Data published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics​ indicated that 16 weeks of supplementation with Gencor’s ActivAMP-branded G. pentaphyllum​ extract also reduced fat accumulation around the hips in women, while liver enzyme levels and inflammatory markers were also decreased.

Commenting on the study’s findings, Ramasamy Venkatesh, Managing Director at Gencor, told NutraIngredients-USA that the results show that the ingredient’s property of activating AMPK results in maintaining ideal body composition.  AMP Kinase is the key enzyme for controlling metabolic activity in the body and activating AMP Kinase provides all the beneficial effects related to this metabolism.

“Published ​in-vitro and animal studies on ActivAMP have shown that it's active components Ginsennoside Rg3 and Gypenoside L activate AMP Kinase and provide metabolic benefits,” ​added Venkatesh.

“The published human study validates these mechanistic studies. It was very well known that ActivAMP was an activator of AMPK and earlier studies had shown reduction in body weight and visceral adiposity. This study, done for a longer period of 16 weeks showed that the activation of AMP Kinase by ActivAMP had multiple benefits over a wide range of metabolic functions.”

This study was funded by Gencor Pacific Ltd, Hong Kong.

Study details

Gynostemma pentaphyllum © weisschr Getty Images
Gynostemma pentaphyllum, also called jiaogulan, is a climbing vine widely distributed across South and East Asia. Image © weisschr / Getty Images

The researchers recruited 117 overweight and obese men and women to participate in their double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study. The subjects were randomly assigned to receive either 450 mg ActivAMP per day or placebo for 16 weeks. Body composition was assessed using dual-energy X-rays. Other measures included anthropometric measures and inflammatory and safety markers.

Results showed that the G. pentaphyllum​ extract group experienced significant reductions in total body weight, BMI, and total fat mass, compared to the placebo group. Additional sex-specific analysis showed that women receiving the herbal supplement experienced significant reductions in gynoid (hip and backside) fat, while men experienced significant reductions in visceral (abdominal) fat.

In addition, improvements in measures of the Liver Enzyme Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT), plasma triglycerides, and the inflammatory marker TNF-alpha in the G. pentaphyllum​ extract group, compared to placebo.

“In conclusion, ​G. pentaphyllum appears to be a promising compound capable of altering fat mass and fat distribution in overweight and obese males and females,” ​concluded the researchers.

ActivAMP is used in about 10 products currently in the US.

Source: Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics
First published: 29 July 2021 https://doi.org/10.1111/jhn.12936
“The effect of an orally-dosed​ Gynostemma pentaphyllum extract (ActivAMP) on body composition in overweight, adult men and women: A double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled study”
Authors: A. Rao, et al.

Related topics: Research, Botanicals, Weight management

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