Background and Objective: Since Abelmoschus esculentus plant has many medical benefits, the present study aimed to investigate the therapeutic effects of Okra Powder (Abelmoschus esculentus) against high-fat diet fed-streptozotocin (HFD/STZ)-induced diabetic rats.
Methods: In this experimental study, 25 Wistar Albino female rats were randomly divided into 5 groups: I: control group; II: healthy rats receiving A. esculentus (200 mg/kg); III (HFD/STZ group): Rats fed with high-fat diet (HFD) (60% fat) for 4 weeks and then injected low-dose STZ (35 mg/kg); IV: diabetic rats receiving A. esculentus (200mg/kg) and V: diabetic rats receiving metformin (200 mg/kg). At the end of experiment, biochemical parameters, including Fasting Blood Glucose (FBG), insulin levels, Homa-IR index, ALT, AST and lipid profile were measured. Pancreas and Liver samples were removed, and 5-6 µ sections were prepared and stained by H&E and aldehyde fuchsin staining.
Results: All the biochemical parameters, except HDL-C and insulin, were increased in diabetic rats, while these parameters were decreased in Okra supplementation group compared to diabetic rats (p<0.05). Furthermore, Okra improved the histological impairments of pancreas and liver, including vacuolization, and decrease of β-cells as well as hypertrophy and vacuolization of hepatocytes in diabetic rats.
Conclusion: Okra powder improved biochemical parameters, liver structure and restoration of beta cells of pancreas in diabetic rats. Thus, it can be considered a complementary therapy to improve diabetic patients.