Objective: According to our previous studies, propolis of Nigerian origin showed some evidence of hypoglycemic and hypolipidemic activities in addition to its ability to ameliorate oxidative-stress-induced organ dysfunction. This study was carried out to determine whether an ethanolic extract of Nigerian propolis (EENP) improves glycated hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), fasting plasma glucose, very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL), and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) concentrations in rats that have alloxan diabetes.
Materials and methods: Diabetes was induced with alloxan (110 mg/kg). Animals were divided into 5 groups (n = 5); Group 1 was non-diabetic receiving normal saline and Group 2 was diabetic but also received only normal saline. Groups 3, 4, and 5 were diabetic receiving 200 mg/kg propolis, 300 mg/kg propolis, and 150 mg/kg metformin, respectively, for 42 days.
Results: Hyperglycemia, elevated serum level of VLDL, elevated plasma level of HbA1c, and decreased levels of HDL were observed in the diabetic untreated animals. Nigerian propolis decreased blood glucose level and serum level of VLDL but elevated HDL level. These changes were significant (P < 0.05). The levels of plasma HbA1c were also reduced in the propolis-treated groups, and the reduction was significant (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: Nigerian propolis contains compounds exhibiting hypoglycemic, antihyperlipidemic, and HbA1c reducing activities.
Keywords: Glycated hemoglobin; Nigerian propolis; high-density lipoprotein; plasma glucose; very low-density lipoprotein.