The effects of astaxanthin supplementation on visceral adipose tissue and lipid profile in an Otsuka Long Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rat model of hyperphagia and visceral fat accumulation was investigated. At 25 weeks of age, OLETF rats were assigned randomly to an obese control (OC, n = 6) or an astaxanthin supplementation (AX, n = 6) group. Long Evans Tokushima Otsuka (LETO) rats were assigned to a lean control (LT, n = 6) group. The AX group was subjected to 6 weeks of dietary supplementation with 0.2% astaxanthin (2 g/kg diet powder chow food) ad libitum. After the 6-week experimental period, astaxanthin supplementation in obese rats promoted size reduction of visceral adipocytes, with a remarkable decrease in FFA and a significant increase in blood HDL-c concentrations. These results suggest that astaxanthin can at least partially ameliorate lipid profile and adipocyte abnormalities associated with obesity.
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