New enriched bread sticks to the ribs

lupin breadNEW YORK - Bread enriched with seeds from the lupin plant can help people feel more full and eat less, Australian researchers report.

“These results suggest that protein and fiber enrichment of bread with lupin kernel flour has the potential to influence appetite and reduce energy intake, at least in the short term,” Dr. Ya P. Lee of the University of Western Australia in Perth and colleagues write.

Lupin is the name for a family of plants that includes the Texas bluebonnet. In the current study, Lee and others investigated bread enriched with lupin kernel flour (LKF), which contains up to 45 percent protein and 30 percent fiber, with little sugar and starch.

In the first part of the study, 16 people ate either white bread or bread enriched with LKF in various combinations (lupin flour bread for breakfast and white bread for lunch or vice versa, or white bread for breakfast and lunch or LKF bread for both meals), each one week apart. Study participants rated both types of bread to be equally palatable.

People felt significantly more full after eating the lupin-enriched bread for breakfast, the researchers report, and ate fewer calories for lunch after an LKF bread breakfast.

Study participants also ate up to one-third fewer calories at lunch when the meal consisted of a LKF bread sandwich rather than a sandwich on white bread.

In the second part of the study, the team tested blood levels of ghrelin, an appetite-regulating hormone, before and after 17 people consumed either white bread or lupin-enriched bread. Three hours after the meal, ghrelin concentrations were significantly lower when study participants ate the lupin bread than when they consumed white bread, suggesting that they felt full for longer.

The researchers conclude that lupin kernel flour could be added to several different types of food to help improve appetite regulation.

Copyright 2006 Reuters Limited.