Flours were produced from unripe plantain fruit, okara, and Detarium microcarpum and analysed for selected properties. Plantain flours were supplemented with 5% levels of Detarium microcarpum and okara flours as dietary fiber sources and the effect on blood glucose and serum cholesterol levels of albino rats evaluated using bioassay. Plantain flour showed the highest (p<0.05) content of sugar (10.59%) compared to Detarium microcarpum (6.89%) and okara (4.29%) while Detarium microcarpum exhibited the highest (p<0.05) level of dietary fiber (78.6%) followed by okara (24.4%) and Plantain (6.6%). Plantain flour had the highest (p<0.05) value of amylose (12.50%) and starch (25.391%) compared to Detarium microcarpum with 0.14% of amylose and 0.54% of starch and okara with 0.38% of amylose and 0.39% of starch. There was no significant difference (p>0.05) in zinc level in the three flours [(plantain (50mg/100g), Detarium microcarpum (50mg/100g) and okara (48.28mg/100g)]. Plantain had the highest level (p<0.05) of vitamin A (1272.72IU), followed by Detarium microcarpum (690.90IU) and then okara (618.18IU). Plantain had the highest level (P<0.05) of vitamin C (1.65%), followed by okara (1.37%) and then Detarium microcarpum (0.55%). Diet formulated with plantain flour supplemented with 5% Detarium microcarpum flour reduced blood glucose level from 356mg/dl (which was recorded 2days after induction of alloxan solution) to 113mg/dl (which was recorded at the end of the three weeks study) and this translated to 68.26% reduction while diet formulated with plantain flour supplemented with 5% okara flour reduced blood glucose level from 539mg/dl (which was recorded 2 days after induction with alloxan solution) to 116mg/dl (recorded at the end of the three weeks study) which was about 78.48% reduction. Diabetic rats fed plantain diet supplemented with 5% Detarium microcarpum flour had lower (P<0.05) total cholesterol (1.31mmol/l), low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (0.31mmol/l) and high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (0.93mmol/l) than total cholesterol (1.60mmol/l), LDL (0.33mmol/l), and HDL (1.24mmol/l) of non-diabetic rats fed control diet. Also, the total cholesterol (1.47mmol/l), LDL cholesterol (0.33mmol/l) and HDL cholesterol (1.09mmol/l) of diabetic rats fed plantain diet supplemented with 5% okara flour were lower (p<0.05) than the total cholesterol (1.60mmol/l), LDL cholesterol (0.33mmol/l) and HDL cholesterol (1.24mmol/l) found in non-diabetic rats fed control diets.


1.1       Problem Statement
1.2       Objective of Study
1.3       Justification of Study

2.1       Plasma Glucose Regulation
2.2       Diabetes Mellitus
2.3       Diet and Diabetes
2.4       The Concept of Glycemic Index
2.5       Glycemic Load (GL)
2.6       Cholesterol and Lipid Profile
2.7       Fiber and its Health Benefits
2.8       Functional Foods and Diseases
2.9       Detarium microcarpum
2.10     Plantain
2.11     Soybean and its Products

3.1       Sourcing of Raw Material
3.2       Preparation of Raw Materials
3.2.1    Preparation of Plantain Flour
3.2.2    Preparation of Soybean Residue (Okara) Flour
3.2.3    Preparation of Detarium microcarpum seed Flour
3.3       Analysis of the Flour Samples
3.3.1    Proximate Analysis
3.3.2    Determination of Physicochemical Properties of Flour Samples
3.3.3    Determination of Functional Properties
3.3.4    Determination of Mineral Content
3.3.5    Determination of Selected Antinutrients
3.3.6    Determination of Selected Vitamins
3.3.7    Dietary Fiber Determination
3.4       Diet Formulation
3.5       Experimental Design
3.6       Animal and Housing
3.7       Blood Glucose Determination
3.8       Serum Cholesterol Determination
3.9       Food and Water Intake Measurement and Body Weight of the Rats
3.10     Statistical Analysis






Diabetes is a public health issue that needs quick attention. Diabetes mellitus is a heterogeneous metabolic syndrome with several different causes characterized by chronic hyperglycemia with partial or total lack of insulin secretion and a reduced sensitivity to the hormone in peripheral tissues. Diabetes mellitus can also be defined as a disease characterized by raised glucose concentration in the blood, as a result of deficiency or diminished effectiveness of insulin (Passmore and Eastwood, 1986). There are two types of diabetes mellitus: Type 1 and Type 2. The Type 1 diabetes is the one that results out of complete β-cell destruction. It is regarded as insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM). It is the form of diabetes in which the person is prone to ketosis and requires insulin therapy. The Type 2 diabetes is known as non insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) and it occurs as a result of either insulin resistance or deficiency in insulin secretion.
Diet therapy is an important means through which diabetes and its complications can be managed, reduced or prevented in order to prolong life expectancy. Nutrition is of utmost importance in intensive diabetes management and has been described as the keystone of care (Kalergis et al., 2005). The major aim of using dietary therapy to manage diabetes is to achieve better glycemic control by balancing food intake with endogenous and/or exogenous insulin levels. Glycemic index (GI) is an important consideration in the dietary management and prevention of obesity and chronic diseases (Jenkins et al., 1981; Brand-Miller, 2003). The consumption of low GI food is associated with a decrease of the risk of the progression of diabetes and glucose intolerance. These effects prompted the FAO/WHO (1998) consultation to endorse the use of GI in diet planning. The American Dietetic Association (ADA) reviewed the evidence of glycemic index as a nutrition therapy intervention for diabetics and acknowledged that low glycemic index foods may reduce postprandial blood glucose levels and asserted that there is sufficient evidence of long term benefit to recommend using low glycemic index diet as a primary strategy in meal planning (ADA, 2008). Glycemic index (GI) is a system developed by Jenkins et al. (1998) for classifying carbohydrates based on the effect that a food has on blood sugar levels when consumed. According to Brand-Miller (2003), GI and Glycemic Load (GL) are useful tools in predicting the blood glucose response to various foods. GI is a ratio of the blood glucose response to a given food compared to a standard (typically, glucose or white bread) while GL describes how different foods affect blood glucose (and insulin) level by taking into account the glycemic index and the amount of carbohydrate consumed. Glycemic response is referred to as the ability of foods to cause a rise in blood glucose level. Foods that have high glycemic index cause rapid and strong rise in blood sugar levels; diets rich in such foods have been linked to increased risk for both diabetes and heart disease (Kouassi et al., 2009). The glycemic index of starchy foods range from over 100 to as low as below 40 (with white bread as reference). Several potato and bread products have high values while unprocessed grains, pasta and legumes have lower values. The GI of foods is influenced by starch structure, fiber content, degree of food processing, physical structure, food temperature and the presence of other macronutrients in the meal, such as fats (Wardlaw and Hampl, 2007).

Although, every component of a food (protein, fat, water etc) will influence the rate of carbohydrate absorption, fiber content is a major determinant in the postprandial glucose response (Wolever, 1990; Nishimune et al., 1991). Stark and Madar (1994), stated that the prescription of high fiber diets and isolated fiber supplements were very common in the treatment of diabetic patients and were thought to aid in stabilizing blood glucose levels, increasing insulin sensitivity and preventing long-term diabetic complications. In addition, the slower glucose absorption that occurs with diets high in soluble fiber is linked to a decrease in insulin release. Trowell (1975) reported the lowering effect on blood glucose level and blood cholesterol content by dietary fiber; while Pederson et al. (1980), reported that the supplementation of the diets of diabetic patients or those with impaired glucose tolerance with fiber in the form of bran, or guar gum or the use of naturally high fiber foods such as whole grain cereals or dried legumes resulted in an improvement in blood glucose profiles, reduction in urinary glucose and a decrease in the mean serum cholesterol level. Because insulin stimulates cholesterol synthesis in the liver, this reduction in insulin may contribute to the ability of soluble fiber to lower blood cholesterol (Wardlaw and Hampl, 2007). Overall, a fiber-rich diet containing fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grain breads and cereals is advocated as part of a strategy to reduce risk of cardiovascular disease (coronary heart disease and stroke) (Koh-Banerjee et al., 2004) and diabetes as well.

Soluble fibers such as gum arabic, guar gum, locust bean gum and pectin are present in numerous food products especially salad dressings, ice creams, jams and jellies. Other rich sources of soluble fibers include fruits, vegetables and legumes in general, soy bean fiber, rice bran and psyllium seed. Other indigenous foods of fruit and legume origin that have been found to be rich in fiber and can be used to formulate fiber-rich diet include Detarium microcarpum, okara (soymilk residue) and plantain (Musa paradisiaca). Okara is a product of soybean, which is a legume. Okara is rich in soy fiber and soy protein, though it was considered as having little market value and was used as animal feed. Rinaldi et al. (2000).....

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