2013 Volume 59 Issue 6 Pages 516-525
We investigated the postprandial thermic effect of chicken and its mechanisms in rats. A chicken diet showed a strong thermic effect after consumption, and the removal of fat induced more rapid and stronger thermogenesis. Although thermogenesis induced by a purified chicken protein diet was also strong, the thermic reaction was not so rapid and a remarkable rise of peripheral temperatures was not observed. Defatted chicken and purified chicken protein activated the thyroid hormone system and up-regulated rate-limiting enzyme genes of glucose metabolism and the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle in the liver. Moreover, chicken protein up-regulated the mRNA expression of a rate-limiting enzyme of hepatic lipid metabolism. It is possible that the mechanisms by which body temperature is raised are different between chicken protein and defatted chicken. On the other hand, it is possible that chicken fat suppressed the expression of energy metabolism-related genes that was induced by the consumption of lean chicken. As a result, a rise of postprandial body temperature might not have been induced after consumption of chicken fat. These results suggest that the consumption of lean chicken activates the thyroid hormone system and hepatic energy metabolism and consequently induces the postprandial thermic effect of chicken.