The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of dietary lemon polyphenols on high-fat diet-induced obesity in mice, and on the regulation of the expression of the genes involved in lipid metabolism to elucidate the mechanisms. Mice were divided into three groups and fed either a low fat diet (LF) or a high fat diet (HF) or a high fat diet supplemented with 0.5% w/w lemon polyphenols (LP) extracted from lemon peel for 12 weeks. Body weight gain, fat pad accumulation, the development of hyperlipidemia, hyperglycemia, and insulin resistance were significantly suppressed by lemon polyphenols. Supplementation with lemon polyphenols also significantly up-regulated the mRNA level of the peroxisome proliferator activated receptor-alpha (PPARalpha) compared to the LF and HF groups in the liver. Furthermore, the mRNA level of acyl-CoA oxidase (ACO) was up-regulated in the LP group compared to the LF group, but not HF group in the liver, and was also significantly increased in the epididymal white adipose tissue. Thus, feeding with lemon polyphenols suppressed body weight gain and body fat accumulation by increasing peroxisomal beta-oxidation through up-regulation of the mRNA level of ACO in the liver and white adipose tissue, which was likely mediated via up-regulation of the mRNA levels of PPARalpha.
Keywords: insulin resistance; lemon polyphenol; obesity; β-oxidation.