Bifidogenic effect of whole-grain wheat during a 12-week energy-restricted dietary intervention in postmenopausal women
Research output: Contribution to journal › Journal article › Research › peer-review
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: Consumption of whole-grain products is known to have beneficial effects on human health. The effects of whole-grain products on the intestinal microbiota and intestinal integrity have, however, only been studied limitedly. We investigate changes of the human gut microbiota composition after consumption of whole-grain (WW) or refined wheat (RW) and further study effects on gut wall integrity. SUBJECTS/METHODS: Quantitative PCR was used to determine changes in the gut bacterial composition in postmenopausal women following a 12-week energy-restricted dietary intervention with WW (N=38) or RW (N=34). Intestinal integrity was determined by measuring trans-epithelial resistance (TER) across a Caco-2 cell monolayer, following exposure to faecal water. RESULTS: No significant differences in microbiota composition were observed between the two dietary groups; however, the whole-grain intervention increased the relative abundance of Bifidobacterium compared to baseline, supporting a prebiotic effect of whole-grain wheat. Faecal water increased TER independent of dietary intervention, indicating that commensal bacteria produce metabolites that generally provide a positive effect on intestinal integrity. Combining microbiota composition data from the run-in period with its effect on TER revealed a tendency for a negative correlation between the relative abundance of Bifidobacterium and TER (P=0.09). This contradicts previous findings but supports observations of increased Salmonella infection in animal models following treatment with bifidogenic prebiotics. CONCLUSIONS: The present study shows that whole-grain wheat consumption increases the abundance of bifidobacteria compared to baseline and may have indirect effects on the integrity of the intestinal wall.
|Journal||European Journal of Clinical Nutrition|
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|