Metabolic variables of obese dogs with insulin resistance supplemented with yeast beta-glucan

BMC Vet Res. 2022 Jan 3;18(1):14. doi: 10.1186/s12917-021-03106-2.


Background: Obesity is one of the most common nutritional disorders in dogs and cats and is related to the development metabolic comorbidities. Weight loss is the recommended treatment, but success is difficult due to the poor satiety control. Yeast beta-glucans are known as biological modifiers because of their innumerable functions reported in studies with mice and humans, but only one study with dogs was found. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of a diet supplemented with 0.1% beta-glucan on glucose, lipid homeostasis, inflammatory cytokines and satiety parameters in obese dogs. Fourteen dogs composed three experimental groups: Obese group (OG) with seven dogs with body condition score (BCS) 8 or 9; Lean group (LG) included seven non-obese dogs with a BCS of 5; and Supplemented Obese group (SOG) was the OG dogs after 90 days of consumption of the experimental diet.

Results: Compared to OG, SOG had lower plasma basal glycemic values (p = 0.05) and reduced serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels. TNF-α was lower in SOG than in OG (p = 0.05), and GLP-1 was increased in SOG compared to OG and LG (p = 0.02).

Conclusion: These results are novel and important for recognizing the possibility of using beta-glucan in obesity prevention and treatment.

Keywords: beta-glucan; canine; cholesterol; triglycerides; weight loss.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Diet / veterinary
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Dog Diseases* / drug therapy
  • Dog Diseases* / metabolism
  • Dogs
  • Insulin
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Obesity* / metabolism
  • Obesity* / veterinary
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / chemistry
  • beta-Glucans* / administration & dosage


  • Insulin
  • beta-Glucans