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Regular consumption of «Nkui», a Cameroonian traditional dish, may protect against cardiovascular and bone disorders in an estrogen deficiency condition

Edwige Nana Tchoupang, Sylvin Benjamin Ateba, Marie Alfrede Mvondo, Derek Tantoh Ndinteh, Télesphore Benoit Nguelefack, Stéphane Zingue, Liselotte Krenn, Dieudonné Njamen

Journal of Complementary & Integrative Medicine 2021 April 5

OBJECTIVES: There is a growing body of evidence indicating the potential of culinary herbs and spices to decrease the incidence of several chronic diseases or conditions. Because of this, the WHO recommends their regular consumption. In the Cameroonian culinary practices, «Nkui» is a famous dish made from a mixture of 10 spices. In our previous study, the ethanolic extract of this mixture exhibited promising estrogenic properties. Thus, this study aimed to evaluate its protective effects on some menopause-related cardiovascular and bone disorders.

METHODS: For this purpose, a post-menopause-like model (ovariectomized rats) has been used. Animals were orally treated with the «Nkui» extract for 60 days. The investigation focused on the oxidative stress status, endothelial function (NO bioavailability), lipid profile, and bone mass, biochemical (calcium and inorganic phosphorus contents, serum alkaline phosphatase activity) and histomorphological features.

RESULTS: The extract regulated lipid metabolism in a way to prevent accumulation of abdominal fat, gain in body weight and increased atherogenic indexes induced by ovariectomy. It prevented menopause-related low levels of nitric oxide and oxidative stress damage by increasing superoxide dismutase and catalase activities, while reducing glutathione and malondialdehyde levels in the heart and aorta. Moreover, it prevented ovariectomy-induced bone mass loss, bone marrow disparities and the disorganization of the trabecular network. It also increased femur calcium and inorganic phosphorus contents.

CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that a regular consumption of «Nkui» may have health benefits on cardiovascular system and osteoporosis, major health issues associated with menopause.