World Institute of Kimchi: Kimchi lowers blood triglyceride level by 33%

  • Finding from an animal study (mice)
  • Total blood cholesterol level also drops by 14%
  • Study by Professor Song, Yeong Ok’s team at Pusan National University

SEOUL, South Korea, Nov. 16, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — World Institute of Kimchi, which discovers and promotes kimchi’s scientific excellence announces that kimchi, a major Korean traditional fermented food, helps significantly lower cholesterol and triglycerides levels in the blood found from an animal study. The same study also suggests that kimchi intake can lead to considerably lower expression of inflammatory cytokine.

The study was conducted by Prof. Song, Yeong Ok and her team at the Department of Food Science and Nutrition and Kimchi Research Institute of Pusan National University, which is one of the longest research teams in World Institute of Kimchi in Korea. For eight weeks, the team fed a high-cholesterol diet with kimchi to an experimental group (10 mice) and the same diet without kimchi to a control group (10 mice). The result of the study titled “Preventative activity of kimchi on high cholesterol diet-induced hepatic damage through regulation of lipid metabolism in LDL receptor knockout mice” was published in a recent issue of the Food Science and Biotechnology. (Vol. 27, Issue 1, 2018).

After eight weeks, the triglycerides level in the kimchi group was 138 mg/dl, which was 33.3% lower compared with the control group (208 mg/dl). Triglycerides help build up LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) but facilitates the breakdown of HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol). High triglyceride levels can increase the risks of heart diseases and strokes.

In addition, the total blood cholesterol level of the kimchi group was 1,342 mg/dl, which is 14.4% lower compared with the control group (1,568 mg/dl).

Kimchi intake also contributed to preventing fat from building up in the liver. The hepatic triglyceride and total cholesterol levels in the kimchi group were 26.3% and 38.9% lower respectively compared with the control group.

Kimchi also helped sustain healthy liver function. Levels of AST and ALT, which are indicators of liver damage, were both lower in the kimchi group. Elevated AST and ALT levels are generally associated with damaged liver cells caused by hepatitis, fatty liver, and hepatocirrhosis.

Lower inflammatory cytokine activity was also found in mice fed with kimchi. Inflammation and fat accumulation are closely associated with obesity, arteriosclerosis, fatty liver, and other chronic diseases. Overall, the study found that kimchi improves blood vessel health indicators and helps reduce inflammation.

Previous studies have found that the lactic acid bacteria in kimchi helps lower cholesterol.

Praising Song Young – ok ‘s experiment results, Ha, Jaeho a general director of the World Institute of Kimchi says, “The rich dietary fiber in kimchi cabbage, white radish and so on, which are the main ingredients of kimchi, helps lower cholesterol levels.” He added, “This is why kimchi intake is recommended in Western countries where there is a high prevalence of artery diseases such as cardiovascular disorders.”

About World Institute of Kimchi

A government-funded research institute established to perform research and development related to kimchi, to lead national technological innovation, nature and develop the kimchi industry that will boost the national growth. It performs overall research and development related to kimchi, in order to lead national technological innovation and nurture and develop the kimchi industry that will boost the national growth.

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