Changes in meal composition and duration affect postprandial endothelial function in healthy humans.Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 2014 Dec 15; 307(12):G1191-7.AJ
Endothelial function, measured by flow-mediated dilatation (FMD), predicts cardiovascular events and is impaired postprandially. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of changes in composition or duration of ingestion of a meal, which slows gastric emptying and/or small intestinal nutrient exposure, on postprandial endothelial function. Twelve healthy subjects (6 male, 6 female; 33 ± 6 yr) were each studied on three occasions, in a randomized crossover design. After an overnight fast, subjects consumed a [(13)C]octanoic acid-labeled mashed potato meal ("meal 1"), or meal 1 mixed with 9 g guar ("meal 2") within 10 min, or meal 1 divided into 12 equal portions over 60 min ("meal 3"). Brachial artery FMD was measured every 30 min for 120 min. Blood glucose, serum insulin, and gastric emptying (breath test) were evaluated for 240 min. Data are means ± SE. Compared with meal 1, meal 2 was associated with slower gastric emptying (half-emptying time 285 ± 27 vs. 208 ± 15 min, P < 0.05), lower postprandial blood glucose and insulin (P < 0.001 for both), and a delayed, but more sustained, suppression of FMD (P < 0.001). After meal 3, both glycemic increment and reduction in FMD were less than after meal 2 (P < 0.05 for both). The decrement in FMD was directly related to the increment in blood glucose (r = 0.46, P = 0.02). We conclude that, in health, postprandial FMD is influenced by perturbation of gastric emptying and the duration of meal consumption, which also impact on glycemia.