Effects of dates pulp extract and palm sap (Phoenix dactylifera L.) on gastrointestinal transit activity in healthy rats.
J Med Food. 2014 Jul ;17(7):782-6. Epub 2014 Mar 10. PMID: 24611963
The current study was performed to measure the chemical composition and the effects of dates pulp extract and palm sap on gastrointestinal transit (GIT) activity in healthy adult rats. In this respect, male Wistar rats fasted for 24 hours were used and received per orally (p.o.) sodium chloride (NaCl) (0,9%) (control group) or various doses of dates pulp extract (150 and 300 mg/kg, body weight [b.w.]) and palm sap (0.4 and 4 mL/kg, b.w.). Two other groups of rats (batch tests) received, respectively, clonidine (an alpha-2 adrenergic agonist, 1 mg/kg, b.w.) and yohimbine (an alpha-2 adrenergic antagonist, 2mg/kg, b.w.). Chemical analysis showed that the dates pulp extract is more rich in sugars and minerals, especially potassium and sucrose, as compared with palm sap composition. On the other hand, in vivo study showed that the aqueous dates pulp extract significantly, and dose dependently, increased the GIT activity while the palm sap slightly increased it. Moreover, a converse effect has been observed using clonidine (decreased 68%) and yohimbine (increased 33%) on the GIT activity. These findings suggest that dates pulp extract and palm sap have a stimulating effect on GIT activity in rats and confirm their use in traditional Tunisian medicine for the treatment of constipation.