Journal of medicinal food

Comparison of hesperetin and its metabolites for cholesterol-lowering and antioxidative efficacy in hypercholesterolemic hamsters.

PMID 20553191


This study was performed to compare the hypolipidemic and antioxidant efficacy of hesperetin and its metabolites in hypercholesterolemic hamsters. The hamsters were fed a high-fat (10% coconut oil and 0.2% cholesterol, wt/wt) diet or a high-fat diet supplemented with hesperetin (0.02%) or hesperetin metabolites, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylpropionic acid (DHPP) (0.012%) and 3-methoxy-4-hydroxycinnamic acid (ferulic acid) (0.013%), for 12 weeks. Dietary DHPP and ferulic acid were found to have significantly decreased the levels of the plasma total cholesterol, non-high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C), apolipoprotein B, hepatic lipids, and cholesterol-regulating enzymes compared to the control group. In particular, ferulic acid was more potent with respect to raising HDL-C/total cholesterol ratio and paraoxonase levels while decreasing atherogenic index values. Hesperetin and its metabolites seemed to enhance antioxidant capacity by lowering the hydrogen peroxide and lipid peroxide (thiobarbituric acid-reactive substrates) levels. Among the hesperetin metabolites tested, the relative potency of ferulic acid for reducing the risks of atherosclerosis in hamsters was found to be greater.