Obesity is known as the leading public health problem across globe. It is a primary risk factor for a number of complications such as increased blood sugar level, cardiovascular health problems, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, arthritis, lung problems and some of the more common forms of cancer (Majeed et al., 2009).
An improper diet and sedentary lifestyle are the major causes for an increased incidence of obesity. Reduction of fat storage/ overweight of individuals requires much and prolonged effort. Diet restrictions and extreme exercise regimens have poor success rates in weight reduction. However, smart nutritional choices supplemented with natural weight management products in combination with appropriate exercise regimens would serve the purpose (Majeed et al., 2009).
Excess carbohydrates in the diet are ultimately converted to fats and stored in the body. In both plants and animals, starch is broken down by amylases and maltase to yield glucose. The enzymes that catalyze the conversion of starch (a polysaccharide) into sugar molecules (monosaccharides) are called amylases. Surprisingly, plants usually contain amylase inhibitory compounds in the same organs (seeds and tubers) where the starch is stored, to ward off bacterial, fungal and animal predators. No parallels exist in mammalian systems.
Currently, scientists focus their interest on the amylase inhibitors produced by plants to block amylase activity in the human digestive tract. An amylase inhibitor acts as an anti-nutrient that obstructs the digestion of starch and absorption of glucose. Therefore, amylase inhibitors are therapeutically valued in conditions such as diabetes (to reduce blood sugar levels) and in weight management. One of the conventionally used drugs in the management of diabetes, Acarbose, is a complex oligosaccharide that delays the digestion of ingested carbohydrates. Acarbose inhibits the action of pancreatic amylase in breaking down starch, thereby achieving this effect.
Fabenol® is an alpha-amylase inhibitory natural extract obtained from Phaseolus vulgaris (common bean, kidney bean) that blocks the digestion of dietary starch, thus providing remarkable benefits in the maintenance of healthy blood sugar levels and optimal body composition.