Appetite controlling has been an main strategy for regulating food intake and energy balance in obesity treatment. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of drinking tea of the medicinal herbs, fennel and fenugreek, on the subjective appetite in overweight Korean women. The study was conducted using a placebo-controlled, single-blinded, randomized, and 3-way crossover design. Nine healthy women were given fennel tea (FT), fenugreek tea (FGT), or placebo tea (PT). After drinking a given tea, a lunch buffet was provided and then food consumption of subjects was analyzed. Subjective appetite, hunger, fullness, desire to eat, and prospective food consumption were measured at seven independent time point using a visual analog scale (VAS). Mean age of 9 subjects were 49.7 ± 4.5 years and their mean body mass index were 24.6 ± 0.6 kg/m(2). There was no significant difference in food consumption in the lunch buffet after drinking each tea; however, with respect to the subjective appetite scale, FGT decreased hunger, led to less prospective food consumption, and increased feelings of fullness compared with the PT (p < 0.05). Similarly, the consumption of FT resulted in decreased hunger, less prospective food consumption, and increased feelings of fullness compared with the PT (p < 0.05). The area under the curve of VAS graph indicated that FGT resulted in a higher feeling of fullness than the PT (p < 0.05). In conclusion, drinking the FT and FGT were significantly effective aid to suppress subjective appetite among overweight women in South Korea.
Keywords: Appetite; Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare); Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum); Visual analog scale.