Aim of the study: Nasturtium officinale R. Br. (Brassicaceae) is used as a home remedy in Iran as a cardioprotective agent without any scientific background. In this investigation an attempt was made to study the effect of Nasturtium officinale hydroalcoholic extract (NOE) on serum lipid profile which is closely associated with many cardiovascular diseases.
Materials and methods: Accordingly, serum total cholesterol (TC), triglyceride (TG), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) were among the parameters investigated. We also evaluated the activities of serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels as a measure of hepatic cell damages.
Results: Intragastric administration of NOE (500 mg/kg body weight per day) to groups of hypercholesterolaemic rats for 10 days lowered their serum TC, TG and LDL-C by 34.2, 30.1, and 52.9%, respectively, while raised the serum HDL-C level by 27.0% after 10 days of treatments. Treatment with NOE reduced serum ALT and AST levels compared to high-fat diet groups.
Conclusions: Based on these data, it is concluded that the NOE has definite cardioprotective potential and these results constitute a valid scientific basis for consuming Nasturtium officinale for medicinal application.