ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE
BRAZILIAN TYPICAL FOOD WITH POTENTIAL TO IMPROVE LIPID PROFILE
1Patrícia Cincotto dos Santos Bueno, 1,2,*Sandra Maria Barbalho, 1Isabela Ramos Araújo de
Medeiros, 1Isabella Vasconcelos Zattiti, 1Claudemir Gregório Mendes, 1ElenLandgraf Guiguer,
1Maricelma Silva Soares De Souza, 1Adriano Cressoni de Araújo and 1Raul J. S. Girio
1School of Medicine, University of Marília (UNIMAR), Av. Higino Muzzi Filho 1001, Marília,
15525-902, São Paulo, Brazil
2Department of Biochemistry and Nutrition, Faculty of Food Technology of Marília (FATEC), São Paulo, Brazil
ARTICLE INFO ABSTRACT
Tapioca is a food produced from the cassava roots and is commonly used in Brazil to prepare many products.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of tapioca on the metabolic profile of Wistar rats. Twenty
female rats were divided in G1: control group (n=10) and G2: treated group (n=10). The treated group
received tapioca flour mixed to the rat food for 45 days, and the control group received commercial rat food.
Body weight was evaluatedthree times a week. Blood samples were collected to evaluate glycemia, total
cholesterol (TC), LDL-c, HDL-c, and triglycerides (TG). Anthropometric parameters were also evaluatedas
well as atherogenic indices. A significant reduction was observed in the levels of TC, LDL-c, and abdominal
circumference in the treated group although the food intake was significantly higher in this group. The intake
of tapioca positively interferes with the lipid levels.
Copyright © 2018, Patrícia Cincotto dos Santos Bueno et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which
permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
The ingestion of many different kinds of foods has been
postulated to improve risk factors of chronic degenerative
diseases such as diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, and
hypertension, which are related to cardiovascular diseases,
cancer, and death. Many of these foods have shown effects
against insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, overweight and
obesity (Telle-Hansen et al., 2017;Santos et al., 2017; Noumiet
al., 2017; Costa et al., 2017; Seo, Kim, 2017; Castellano-
Castillo et al., 2017). Tapioca has been considered in popular
medicine as also having effects under these conditions.
However, few studies are observed in the literature. Tapioca is
an edible starch, produced from the roots of cassava
(Manihotesculenta Crantz), which is used in the preparation of
sweet and savory dishes.
*Corresponding author: Sandra Maria Barbalho,
1School of Medicine, University of Marília (UNIMAR), Av. Higino
Muzzi Filho 1001, Marília, 15525-902, São Paulo, Brazil.
2Department of Biochemistry and Nutrition, Faculty of Food
Technology of Marília (FATEC), São Paulo, Brazil.
It is a plant widely cultivated in several tropical countries and
often consumed as a staple food. The roots provide a cheap
source of carbohydrate and a low content of proteins
(Kanmaniet al., 2018; Silva et al., 2013; Wang et al., 2014;
Maier et al., 2017). The cassava belongs to the family
Euphorbiaceae and is produced in Brazil under the system of
subsistence agriculture. Nowadays tapioca can be considered
one of the most traditional symbols of the cuisine of the North
and Northeast of the country and is used in different dishes
appreciated by the populations of all the income ranges (Oso et
al., 2014; Queirozet al., 2009; Dias, Leonel, 2006). Tapioca is
a very common food for Brazilians, has low cost, and
popularly is associated with the reduction of some
cardiovascular risk factors. For these reasons,the aim of this
study was to evaluate its effects on the metabolic profile of
Ethical Principle and Group of Animals: This study had the
approval by the Animal Research Ethics Committee of the
International Journal of Development Research
Vol. 08, Issue, 02, pp.18969-18972, February,
Received 14th November, 2017
Received in revised form
20th December, 2017
Accepted 23rd January, 2018
Published online 28th February, 2018
Available online at http://www.journalijdr.com
Glycaemia, Body Weight.
Citation: Patrícia Cincotto dos Santos Bueno, Sandra Maria Barbalho, Isabela Ramos Araújo de Medeiros, Isabella Vasconcelos Zattiti, Claudemir
Gregório Mendes, ElenLandgraf Guiguer, Maricelma Silva Soares De Souza, Adriano Cressoni de Araújo and Raul J. S. Girio, 2018. “Brazilian
typical food with potential to improve lipid profile”, International Journal of Development Research, 8, (02), 18969-18972.
ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE OPEN ACCESS
Medical School of Marilia (UNIMAR) – Marilia – São Paulo,
Brazil. Twenty female Wistar rats (Rattusnorvegicus),
weighing 180g to 200g, were obtained from the Animal
Experimentation Center - University of Marilia (UNIMAR),
Marilia – São Paulo, Brazil. Seven days before the beginning
of the experimental protocol the female were separated into 2
groups andwas acclimated to the laboratory conditions and
housed in plastic boxes at controlled room temperature (20°C
to 25°C) and light/dark cycle of 12 hours. After acclimation,
female rats were divided in G1: control group (n=10) and G2:
treated group (n=10). The treated group received tapioca flour
during 45 days, and the control group received commercial rat
food. Both groups received water and food ad libitum.
The treated group received the commercial rat food mixed
with the tapioca flour in a ratio of 80:20 (commercial rat
food:tapioca). This mixture was moistened, and the pellets
were reconstituted and dried for later use. Body weight was
evaluatedthree times a week. At the end of the experimental
protocol,the rats were anesthetized with thiopental
(200mg/kg). After death, blood samples were collected to
evaluate the biochemical profile: glycemia, total cholesterol
(TC), HDL-c, and triglycerides (TG). Anthropometric
parameters were also evaluated (Lee Index, body weight,
thoracic circumference; abdominal circumference and visceral
Atherogenic Index (AI), Atherogenic Coefficient (AC), and
Cardiac Risk Ratio 1 (CRR1) were evaluated after Ahmadvand
et al., 2016; Munshi, Joshi and Rane, 2015); Ikewuchi, 2012):
non-HDL-c = Total cholesterol – HDL-c; AI = log (TG/HDL-
c); AC = (TC – HDL-c)/HDL-c; CCR1 = TC/HDL-c, and
CCR2 = LDL-c/HDL-c.
All data were expressed as mean ± standard deviation. The
analysis was performed initially by the unpaired T-test for the
variables with distribution or the Man-Whitney test when they
did not present normality. The results were analyzed using the
software BioEstat5.3, and the level of significance was 5%.
In Table 1 it is observed that the animals of the two groups
started the experiment with similar mean body weight. At the
end of the study, no significant difference was observed in the
mean weight gain, Lee index, Body Mass Index, thoracic
circumference, and visceral fat. A significantincrease in food
intake was observed in the treated group but no modifications
were observed in body weight and a reduction was seen in the
Table 1. Food and water intake, nthropometric and biochemical parameters for G1 and G2
Parameters (mg/dL) G1 G2 p-value*
137.8±20.68 148.5±30.52 p = 0.185
224.5±16.54 233.4±15.83 p =0.117
Food intake (g) 82.06±20.15 105.24±17.05 p < 0.000‡
Water intake (mL) 140.17±29.03 133.15±28.56 p = 0.148
Lee Index 296.67±7.52 294.98±8.46 p =0.321
Body mass index 0.54±0.035 0.52±0.038 p =0.492
Weight gain (%) 67.40±35.84 62.38±31.144 p =0.452
T. Circumference 9.25±1.11 8.75±0.35 p = 0.153
A. Circumference 10.6±0.61 10.2±0.35 p = 0.045‡
Visceral fat 1.318±0.42 1.236±0.36 p = 0.323
1Weight at the beginning of the experimental protocol; 2Weight at the end of the experimental
protocol;T. Circumference: Thoracic circumference; A. Circumference: Abdominal circumference;
‡ significant difference.
Table 2. Biochemical parameters of G1 and G2 after the treatment with tapioca
Parameters (mg/dL) G1 G2 p-value*
Glycaemia 155.7±22.52 165.8±20.88 p= 0.156
Triglycerides 129.3±19.00 118.75±24.42 p= 0.158
Cholesterol 164.75±5.59 158.7±5.23 p= 0.0151‡
HDL-c 52.0±5.361 50.4±5.361 p=0.495
LDL-c 98.1±24.735 82.4±4.850 p=0.032‡
‡Significant difference; HDL-c: High-Density Lipoprotein; LDL-c: Low-Density Lipoprotein
Table 3. Atherogenic indices in the experimental protocol for G1 and G2
Parameters (mg/dL) G1 G2 p-value*
Non-HDL-c 119.0±23,317 108.3±5.510 p=0.081
AC 1.23±0.630 1.57±0.413 p=0.095
AI 2.233±0.633 2.579±0.413 p=0.919
CCR1 3.17±0.439 3.170±0.230 p=0.490
CCR2 1.389±0.896 1.652±0.203 p=0.336
AC: Atherogenic Coefficient; AI: Atherogenic Index; CRR1: Cardiac Risk Ratio 1;
CRR2: Cardiac Risk Ratio 2.
18970 Patrícia Cincotto dos Santos Bueno et al. Brazilian typical food with potential to improve lipid profile
Tapioca is the starch product extracted from the cassava roots
that are peeled, crushed, disintegrated, concentrated,
dehydrated and dried. It is a natural polysaccharide, consisting
of linear chains (amylose) and branched chains (amylopectin)
and obtained through roots of manioc roots. The result is a
product with a high carbohydrate content, low in protein,
lipids, and minerals. The tapioca flour presents 6.14% of
resistant starch, which does not undergo enzymatic digestionin
humans (Queirozet al., 2009). In Brazil, thepopulationhas been
using tapioca as an alternative to reduce weight. Also, our
results show areduction in the abdominal circumference and in
the food intake, although we did not observe significant
differences in the body weight of the animals. Ble-Castilloet
al. (2017) evaluated the effects of banana starch on the
appetite and found no associated effect on the subjective
appetite ratings or gut hormones but helped to reduce meal
size. Resistant starch supplementation is also related to the
reduction of body weight by some authors (Si et al., 2017;
Barczynska et al., 2016). Diet may interfere in the composition
of the human microbiome that displays several systemic
actions. Resistant starch may exhibit a plethora of health
benefits, including the increase in the ratio of Firmicutes:
Bacteroidetes (Maier et al., 2017). Furthermore, the
fermentation of resistant starch in the colon leads to the
production of acids and derivatives of organic acids with short
chain as acetate, butyrate, and propionate.
These compounds act in the reduction of
hypercholesterolemia. Our results also showed areductionon
the cholesterol and LDL-c levels. By reducing serum
cholesterol levels, resistant starch acts in the prevention of
diseases such as constipation, type 2 diabetes, andcoronary
heart disease. Some studies report a decrease in postprandial
blood glucose or insulin levels associated with ingestion of
resistant starch compared to the consumption of digestible
starch. Similarly to our results, other researchers found no
modification in the glycaemia (Reshmi, Sudha and
Shashirekha, 2017; Koh and Rowling, 2017; Matsuda et al.,
Liu et al. (2006) studied the effects of retrograded tapioca
starch on the ovarian hormone deficiency-induced
hypercholesterolemia in rats and showed that tapioca leads to a
hypocholesterolemic effect in ovariectomized rats but not in
sham-operated animals. Okafor et al. (2016) studied the effects
of four different blends of cassava-wheat bread samples with
0, 10, 15, and 20% of cassava flour. These samples were
included individually to groups of healthy human volunteers
that were studied in the morning after a 10-12-hr overnight
fast. Glycaemia was evaluated after 30 minutesand after 2
hours and observed that the increase in cassava incorporation
resulted insignificantly less glycemic index. We did not find
studies that showed the effects of tapioca on the abdominal
circumference. Our animals showed areduction of this
parameter, but the visceral fat weight did not show asignificant
reduction. The flour of other plants may reduce visceral
weight, such as Morindaoleifera flour (Guigueret al., 2016)
and Pereskia aculeate flour (Barbalho et al.., 2016).Visceral
fat is known as an endocrine organ associated with the
maintenance of homeostasis. On the other hand, it plays an
important role in the development of several comorbidities
such as insulin resistance, diabetes, inflammation and
This association is due to the release of pro-inflammatory
cytokines such as resistin, leptin, Tumor Necrosis Factor,
Interleukin 6, and many othersbiomarkers (Edrisi et al.., 2017;
Shirkawa et al., 2017). The evaluation of the atherogenic
indices is capable of indicating the increase of the risks for
development of cardiovascular diseases and may be considered
in the clinical practice as a potential way of stratification of
these diseases(Choi et al., 2017; Mopuriet al., 2017;Ikewuchi,
2012). The intake of tapioca did not interfere in these indices.
Tapioca may bring positive effects on the metabolic profile of
Wistarrats. Nevertheless, we suggest more studies using this
product to establish the amounts that should be usedin order to
improve cardiovascular risks.
Conflict of interests
Authors declare no conflict of interests.
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