Objective: To determine whether the galactooligosaccharide stimulates calcium absorption in partially gastrectomized rats.
Methods: Animals were submitted to laparotomy (sham-operated control) and partial gastrectomy (Billroth II) in groups of 20. They were fed a control diet (AIN-93M) without galacto-oligosaccharide or a diet containing (galacto-oligosaccharide - 50 g/kg diet) for eight weeks. The animals were divided into four groups: sham-operated and non-gastrectomized with galactooligosaccharide, sham-operated and gastrectomized without galactooligosaccharide. On the final day of the study, whole blood was collected for determination of serum calcium concentration.
Results: In the group with galactooligosaccharides calcium excretion in feces was significantly lower than the group without prebiotics. The apparent absorption of calcium in gastrectomized and normal rats was higher in groups fed with galactooligosaccharide than in the control diet group.
Conclusion: The ingestion of galactooligosaccharides prevents osteopenia in partially gastrectomized rats.