Obesity is growing at epidemic proportions worldwide. Natural compounds curcumin and α-lipoic acid have been shown to reduce body-weight gain in both preclinical and clinical studies. This study examined the effect of a combination of curcumin and α-lipoic acid on weight gain and adiposity in high-fat-diet (HFD)-fed mice.
C57BL6 mice (7 weeks old) were randomly assigned to receive either HFD (60% fat) or a normal diet (ND, 10% fat) for a 12-week period, following which the mice receiving HFD were further assigned to supplemental curcumin (0.07%), α-lipoic acid (0.2%), or a combination of curcumin and α-lipoic acid formulated into the HFD for a further 12 weeks. Food intake and body mass were determined on a weekly basis. Body fat composition was determined by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry.
Treatment with both curcumin and α-lipoic acid significantly reduced body weight gain in HFD-treated mice, and the combination was more effective in attenuating body weight compared to the individual agents. Food intake and caloric intake were significantly lower in the mice that received α-lipoic acid. Percentage body fat and fat mass and lean body mass, which were increased following HFD feeding, were attenuated in the mice receiving curcumin and the combination. Lean mass was also elevated in the mice that were subjected to an HFD, which was unaltered by curcumin or the combination.
Taken together, the combination of curcumin and α-lipoic acid exhibits an additive effect in reducing weight gain and adiposity in response to high-fat feeding.