Anomalous association of salivary amylase secretion with the postprandial glycaemic response to starch

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Background: This study is an investigation as to whether salivary amylase secretory rates are correlated with the magnitude of postprandial glycaemic responses to starch ingestion in healthy young Malaysian adults. Methods: Fasting unstimulated and stimulated salivary amylase secretory rates were measured and ranked for 54 participants. Subjects (n = 5) with amylase activities below the median and subjects (n = 5) with amylase activities above the median were selected for subsequent carbohydrate challenge tests. Following an overnight fast, the postprandial glycaemic responses of these subjects were assessed to 50 g carbohydrate bolus challenges; glucose (n = 2), maltose (n = 1) and starch (n = 1), tested in random order. Blood glucose concentrations were estimated before each carbohydrate challenge and at half-hour intervals thereafter for 2 h. The magnitude of each glycaemic response was estimated from the area under the curve (AUC). Results: High amylase secretors responded to the consumption of a starch bolus with significantly lower AUCs than low amylase secretors (267 +/- 64 vs. 159 +/- 72 mmol/L*120 min, p = 0.037; mean +/- SD). However, the glycaemic responses to maltose and glucose did not differ significantly between the two groups. These findings confirm that subjects with higher salivary amylase secretory rates have better glycaemic tolerance to a starch challenge than subjects with lower salivary amylase secretory rates. Conclusion: Low amylase secretion should be considered as a potential prognosticator for impaired glucose tolerance to dietary starch in young Malaysian adults.




Barling, P. M., Shyam, S., Selvathevan, M. D., & Misra, S. (2016). Anomalous association of salivary amylase secretion with the postprandial glycaemic response to starch. BMC Nutrition, 2(1).

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