1995 Volume 41 Issue 3 Pages 281-291
We investigated the effects of fructooligosaccharides (FO)-feeding on the absorption of iron (Fe), calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) and on the biochemical parameters in Fe-deficient anemic rats. Fe-deficient anemic rats were made by feeding an Fe-deficient diet for 3 weeks. Then these Fe-deficient rats were fed an experimental diet that contained one of two levels of Fe (15 or 30 mg/kg diet), in the form of ferric pyrophosphate, and one of two levels of FO (0 or 50 g/kg diet) for 2 weeks. After the rats were fed these experimental diets, FO-feeding increased the hematocrit ratio, the concentration of hemoglobin and the hemoglobin regeneration efficiency during the first week. Also, the apparent absorption of Fe was increased by FO-feeding. The levels of Fe in the diet did not affect the absorption of Ca and Mg. However, FO-feeding increased the absorption of Ca and Mg. FO-feeding lowered the pH and raised the solubility of Fe, Ca and Mg in the cecal contents, suggesting that those increasing effects of FO-feeding on absorption of these minerals is correlated with fermentation of FO in the large intestine, namely, the cecum and colon. We concluded that FO-feeding improved recovery from anemia and increased the absorption of Fe, Ca and Mg in Fe-deficient anemic rats.