Acute postprandial gastrointestinal and metabolic effects of wheat amylase inhibitor (WAI) in normal, obese, and diabetic humans

Mark Lankisch, Peter Layer, Robert A. Rizza, Eugene P. DiMagno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Amylase inhibition has gastrointestinal and metabolic effects that may aid in the treatment of diabetes and obesity. We tested whether 4 g of a commercially available wheat amylase inhibitor (WAI) affected postprandial carbohydrate (CHO) absorption and plasma glucose or hormones. Twelve persons (four lean and four obese nondiabetics and four obese type II diabetics) were studied on 2 separate days. After eating a weight maintenance diet (55% CHO, 20% protein, and 25% fat, as percentage of calories) for 3 days, subjects ate a breakfast containing 650 kcal, the same proportion of nutrients as calories, and in random order, either WAI or no WAI. Breath H2 and plasma glucose and hormones were measured every 15 and 30 min, respectively, for 7 h. WAI decreased the A peak postprandial plasma glucose concentrations in 10 of 12 subjects (p < 0.05) and increased the breath H2 levels in 11 (p = 0.02); the increases in breath H2 were small, generally <20 ppm. No subject experienced a change in stools, diarrhea, or bloating. In response to WAI, gastric inhibitory peptide decreased (p < 0.05), peptide YY increased (p < 0.05), and there was a trend toward increased human pancreatic polypeptide (p = 0.07). Although WAI delays CHO absorption and reduces peak postprandial plasma glucose concentrations, overall CHO malabsorption is minimal (as reflected by breath hydrogen and hormones) and without symptoms. It, therefore, may be useful in treating type II diabetes mellitus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)176-181
Number of pages6
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1998


  • Breath hydrogen
  • Carbohydrate absorption
  • Diabetes
  • Hormones
  • Obesity
  • Plasma glucose
  • Wheat amylase inhibitor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Hepatology
  • Endocrinology


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