Adipocyte expansion through adipogenesis can offset the adverse metabolic effects of obesity.
Nigella sativa(NS) (black seed) oil is shown to have therapeutic features in the management of obesity. NS oil might have beneficial changes in obese populations through mediating serum levels of adipogenesis-related parameters and relative transcriptional gene–diet interactions (nutrigenomics), though no previous studies assessed this mechanism in overweight/obese participants. This study assessed the effects of NS oil supplements on blood concentration and mRNA expression levels of TNF- α, PPAR- γand serum adiponectin and expression of AdipoR1, as major adipogenesis and obesity-related parameters, in overweight/obese women using a cross-over design. Eligible women were randomised to receive either NS oil supplements (2000 mg/d) or placebo. Two periods of interventions (8 weeks in each) were cross-changed by a 4-week washout period. An individualised diet plan without calorie deficits was given to participants to match their energy/macronutrient intakes. The Pkcross procedure and intention-to-treat analysis were performed using Stata. Cohen’s d(d)was estimated to measure the magnitude of the effects. Forty-six participants were included. NS oil capsules reduced transcription levels (( d= –2·31), P< 0·001) and blood concentrations of TNF- α(( d= –0·29), P< 0·001). AdipoR1 expression ( d= 2·24, P< 0·001) and serum adiponectin ( d= 0·88, P< 0·001) showed a significant augmentation with a medium-high effect size, as did gene expression ( d= 0·69, P< 0·001) and serum levels of PPAR- γ( d= 0·97, P< 0·001). There was a moderate but significant decrease in body weight ( d= 0·6, P< 0·001). The present beneficial findings would provide strong information for future nutrigenomics/clinical trial studies assessing the role of NS in the management of obesity and other comorbidities.