Areca extracts have already been found to exhibit a strong inhibitory activity on cholesterol absorption in high-cholesterol-fed rats. Accordingly, this study was performed to determine whether Areca extracts also exert an inhibitory activity on triglyceride absorption in triglyceride-fed rats. Male rats were fed a diet containing corn oil (10%, w/w) with or without an Areca nut extract supplement (0.5%, w/w). The supplementation of the Areca extract significantly lowered the absorption of triglyceride and the plasma lipid concentration. The absorbed triglyceride that appeared in the blood after an oral dose of [9,10(n)-3H] triglyceride was significantly lower in the rats supplemented with the Areca nut extract, compared with the control group. The supplementation also significantly lowered the small intestinal pCEase (pancreatic cholesterol esterase) activity by 22.5% compared to the control group. The hepatic and intestinal ACAT (acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase) activities were significantly decreased in the Areca group compared with the control group. Hence, further studies are needed to elucidate the structure and chemical properties of the active compound in the water-soluble Areca extract that lowers cholesterol absorption.
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