spinach extract

Study reveals that spinach extract containing thylakoids can increase feeling of fullness for a period of 2 hours, and reduced food cravings


Thylakoids form part of the membrane system of chloroplasts in green plants that are responsible for photosynthesis. A recent study of 60 overweight or obese participants assessed the effects of a patented spinach extract, containing high levels of these thylakoids, on food intake in overweight or obese participants. The study measure lipids and glucose in the blood of participants at various intervals throughout the day. The participants ate a standardized breakfast, followed by lunch four hours later. Participants took the spinach extract (5g) together with the standardized lunch. Another four hours later the participants were served a pizza dinner ad libitum.

The results of the study revealed that those who took the spinach extract had a decrease in hunger and desire for food for over 2 hours. The spinach extract also increased postprandial plasma glucose concentrations in these participants. While the study reported no differences in energy intake at the dinner meal, males in the group who had previously taken the spinach extract tended to eat less at this meal compared to males who did not take the spinach extract.

The results demonstrate that increased intake of thylakoids may affect satiety and food cravings. In addition, the results suggest that thylakoids might have gender-specific effects on food cravings and energy intake. The authors suggest that future research should assess gender-specific differences of thylakoids on appetite regulation and food cravings.


Rebello, CJ, Chu, J, Beyl, R, Edwall, D, Erlanson-Albertsson, C, Greenway, FL. “Acute Effects of a Spinach Extract Rich in Thylakoids on Satiety: A Randomized Controlled Crossover Trial” Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Published online: 01 Jun 2015 DOI:10.1080/07315724.2014.1003999

Image courtesy of Viacheslav Blizniuk at FreeDigitalPhotos.net





Written by Deborah Tallarigo, PhD


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