Effect of hydroxycitrate on food intake and body weight regain after a period of restrictive feeding in male rats

Physiol Behav. 2001 Sep 1-15;74(1-2):191-6. doi: 10.1016/s0031-9384(01)00547-9.


We examined whether dietary supplementation of hydroxycitrate (HCA), a competitive inhibitor of the extramitochondrial enzyme ATP-citrate-lyase, which inhibits lipogenesis, reduces food intake and body weight regain in rats after 10-15% weight loss. In four experiments, 24 male rats were fed restrictively (10 g/day) for 10 days and then given ad lib access to one of four different diets (HI-Suc=high sucrose; HI-Glu=high glucose; Chow=grounded standard rat chow; HI-Glu+Fat=high glucose+fat) varying in the content of fat and low molecular carbohydrates for the following 10 days. For half of the rats (n=12), the ad lib diet was supplemented with 3% (w/w) HCA. HCA reduced body weight regain with all diets except Chow. HCA also reduced food intake temporarily with three of the four tested diets. The suppressive effect of HCA on food intake was particularly strong with the HI-Glu+Fat diet (fat=24% of energy). With Diet HI-Glu and HI-Glu+Fat HCA reduced the feed conversion efficiency (cumulative body weight regain (g)/cumulative food intake (MJ)) during the 10 ad lib days, suggesting that it also increased energy expenditure. This effect seemed to be positively related to the glucose content of the diet. All in all, HCA reduced body weight regain after substantial body weight loss, and the effects are presumably linked to its inhibiting effect on lipogenesis, but the exact mechanism still has to be determined.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Weight / drug effects*
  • Citrates / pharmacology*
  • Diet
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / pharmacology
  • Dietary Fats / pharmacology
  • Eating / drug effects*
  • Energy Metabolism / drug effects
  • Fatty Acids / biosynthesis
  • Food Deprivation / physiology*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Weight Gain / drug effects


  • Citrates
  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Fats
  • Fatty Acids
  • hydroxycitric acid