Banana resistant starch (BRS) was extracted to investigate the structural properties of BRS, its effects on the gastrointestinal transit, and dejecta of normal and experimentally constipated mice. The mouse constipation model was induced by diphenoxylate administration. The BRS administered mice were divided into three groups and gavaged with 1.0, 2.0, or 4.0 g/kg body weight BRS per day. The small intestinal movement, time of the first black dejecta, dejecta granules, weight and their moisture content, body weight, and food intake of mice were studied. Results showed that the BRS particles were oval and spindly and some light cracks and pits were in the surface. The degree of crystallinity of BRS was 23.13%; the main diffraction peaks were at 2(θ) 15.14, 17.38, 20.08, and 22.51. The degree of polymerization of BRS was 81.16 and the number-average molecular weight was 13147.92 Da, as determined by the reducing terminal method. In animal experiments, BRS at the dose of 4.0 g/kg body weight per day was able to increase the gastrointestinal propulsive rate, and BRS at the doses of 2.0 and 4.0 g/kg body weight per day was found to shorten the start time of defecation by observing the first black dejecta exhaust. However, there were no influences of BRS on the dejecta moisture content, the dejecta granules and their weight, body weight, or daily food intake in mice. BRS was effective in accelerating the movement of the small intestine and in shortening the start time of defecation, but did not impact body weight and food intake. Therefore, BRS had the potential to be useful for improving intestinal motility during constipation.
Keywords: banana; constipation; laxative; resistant starch; structure.