17 Aug 2022

Eucommia ulmoides Extract: Dietary inclusion in fattening pigs

A study was carried out to evaluate the inclusion of Eucommia ulmoides leaf extracts within fattening pig diets. Researchers evaluated its effects on carcass characteristics and lipid metabolism.

Eucommia ulmoides Extract: Dietary inclusion in fattening pigs

Eucommia ulmoides is a deciduous evergreen tree of the Eucommiaceae family, widely used in China for the prevention of health problems linked to obesity. This tree is rich in lignans, iridoid terpenes, flavonoids, polysaccharides and other active components, with antihypertensive, hypoglycemic, anti-inflammatory, liver protection, antitumor and other pharmacological properties.

Eucommia

Some studies have been carried out to evaluate the potential of Eucommia ulmoides as a feed supplement within Chinese herbal medicine. Amongst these previous studies, some have focused on the effects of Eucommia ulmoides leaf and its extracts on growth performance and antioxidant activity in pigs (Lee SD, Kim HY, Song YM, et al. 2009). However, there are very few current studies assessing the effects of Eucommia ulmoides leaf extracts (ELE) on lipid metabolism in growing–finishing pigs. And there is still no clear consensus on what may be the optimal supplement level. Considering that there are many similarities between pigs and humans in terms of physiological traits and functions, the effects of ELE as a dietary supplement in pigs can be used as a model to study human nutrition and metabolism (Kleinert M, et al. 2017).

Study

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Based on previous studies, researchers set out a trial in which they supplied varying amounts of ELE: 0, 0.1, 0.2, or 0.3% within growing–finishing pig diets. This study looked at the effects of dietary supplementation with Eucommia ulmoides leaf extract  on carcass characteristics and lipid metabolism in fattening pigs.

Materials and Methods

A total of 144 crossed piglets (Duroc × Landrace × Yorkshire) with an initial average weight of 10.11 ± 0.03 kg were randomly assigned to four treatment groups, with six pens per treatment and six piglets per pen. Each group of pigs was fed a basal diet or a diet supplemented with increasing levels of Eucommia ulmoides leaf extract  (0.1, 0.2 or 0.3%).

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Results and Discussion

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Conclusions

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Source: Abstract taken from “Effects of Different Supplemental Levels of Eucommia ulmoides Leaf Extract in the Diet on Carcass Traits and Lipid Metabolism in Growing–Finishing Pigs.” Frontiers in Veterinary Science. 2021

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