It’s hard to find fault with green, leafy vegetables these days. Besides for containing lots of dietary nitrate, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fiber among other things, they also have a compound called thylakoids. A thylakoid is “a membrane-bound compartment inside chloroplasts (cell-food producers) and cyanobacteria (bacteria like blue-green algae that gets energy through photosynthesis).” New research has shown that thylakoids may help with weight loss and/or weight management through appetite suppression.
A study published at the beginning of June in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition strengthens the case for weight-loss benefits of thylakoids. In the study, they looked at sixty obese and overweight individuals. Some were given five grams of spinach extract and others were given a placebo. Blood was drawn at various times to assess cholesterol, glucose, etc. Four hours after lunch, participants were shown images of foods and took a survey to gauge hunger. Finally, they were offered Tombstone pizzas and were told to eat as much as they liked. Those who had taken the spinach extract saw a two-hour reduction in their hunger levels after thylakoid consumption.
This isn’t the first study that links thylakoids to weight loss. Research published in the October 2014 issue of Appetite was the first human study.
In this study we demonstrated for the first time that green-plant membranes, when added to the diet daily for three months, markedly reduced body weight in overweight women. In addition, total and LDL-cholesterol levels were reduced compared to control. These findings are supported by animal studies, where body weight loss and blood lipid lowering effects have been observed (Kohnke et al, 2009 and Montelius et al, 2013).
The AIM Companies has several products–BarleyLife, CoCoa LeafGreens, BarleyLife Xtra–that contain leafy green vegetables but the most notable is Leaf Greens, a product that will be getting a new formulation soon, making it leafier and greener. It will contain several heavy hitter from the leafy green vegetable kingdom: kale, chard, arugula and spinach. And besides for being excellent sources of folate, vitamin K and carotenoids, it seems that it may aid in appetite suppression as well.