The intestinal microbiota may have a profound impact on host metabolism. As evidence suggests that polyphenols affect substrate utilization, the present study aimed to investigate the effects of polyphenol supplementation on intestinal microbiota composition in humans. Furthermore, we examined whether (changes in) gut microbiota composition may determine the metabolic response to polyphenol supplementation.SUBJECTS/METHODS:
In this randomized, double-blind, placebo (PLA)-controlled trial, 37 overweight and obese men and women (18 males/19 females, 37.8 ± 1.6 years, body mass index: 29.6 ± 0.5 kg/m2) received either epigallocatechin-3-gallate and resveratrol (EGCG+RES, 282 and 80 mg/day, respectively) or PLA for 12 weeks. Before and after intervention, feces samples were collected to determine microbiota composition. Fat oxidation was assessed by indirect calorimetry during a high-fat mixed meal test (2.6 MJ, 61 energy% fat) and skeletal muscle mitochondrial oxidative capacity by means of ex vivo respirometry on isolated skeletal muscle fibers. Body composition was measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry.RESULTS:
Fecal abundance of Bacteroidetes was higher in men as compared with women, whereas other assessed bacterial taxa were comparable. EGCG+RES supplementation significantly decreased Bacteroidetes and tended to reduce Faecalibacterium prausnitzii in men (P = 0.05 and P = 0.10, respectively) but not in women (P = 0.15 and P = 0.77, respectively). Strikingly, baseline Bacteroidetes abundance was predictive for the EGCG+RES-induced increase in fat oxidation in men but not in women. Other bacterial genera and species were not affected by EGCG+RES supplementation.CONCLUSIONS:
We demonstrated that 12-week EGCG+RES supplementation affected the gut microbiota composition in men but not in women. Baseline microbiota composition determined the increase in fat oxidation after EGCG+RES supplementation in men.