Adipose tissue as a possible therapeutic target for polyphenols: A case for Cyclopia extracts as anti-obesity nutraceuticals.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2019 Dec ;120:109439. Epub 2019 Oct 4. PMID: 31590126
Babalwa U Jack
Obesity is a significant contributor to increased morbidity and premature mortality due to increasing the risk of many chronic metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer. Lifestyle modifications such as energy restriction and increased physical activity are highly effective first-line treatment strategies used in the management of obesity. However, adherence to these behavioral changes is poor, with an increased reliance on synthetic drugs, which unfortunately are plagued by adverse effects. The identification of new and safer anti-obesity agents is thus of significant interest. In recent years, plants and their phenolic constituents have attracted increased attention due to their health-promoting properties. Amongst these, Cyclopia, an endemic South African plant commonly consumed as a herbal tea (honeybush), has been shown to possess modulating properties against oxidative stress, hyperglycemia, and obesity. Likewise, several studies have reported that some of the major phenolic compounds present in Cyclopia spp. exhibit anti-obesity effects, particularly by targeting adipose tissue. These phenolic compounds belong to the xanthone, flavonoid and benzophenone classes. The aim of this review is to assess the potential of Cyclopia extracts as an anti-obesity nutraceutical as underpinned by in vitro and in vivo studies and the underlying cellular mechanisms and biological pathways regulated by their phenolic compounds.