RCT shows Korean dang-gui’s benefits for reducing triglyceride levels

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

A trial has shown that Korean dang-gui (angelica gigas nakai) could reduce blood triglyceride levels. ©Getty Images
A trial has shown that Korean dang-gui (angelica gigas nakai) could reduce blood triglyceride levels. ©Getty Images

Related tags South korea Triglyceride Trial

Consuming Korean dang-gui (angelica gigas nakai) for 12 weeks could help reduce blood triglyceride levels, according to a randomised placebo-controlled trial that took place in South Korea.

The study, published in Nutrients, ​was conducted by researchers from Chonbuk National University Hospital.

Korean dang-gui is widely used for improving diabetic hypertension, improving blood circulation, as well as exhibiting anti-diabetic properties. This particularly study used the Korean dang-gui made by Wellness Up Research, a supplement firm from South Korea.

The study recruited 100 subjects who had fasting blood triglyceride level in the normal (130 mg/dL) to high range (200 mg/dL).

For 12 weeks, the intervention group took 200mg of the Korean dang-gui extract each day, while the control group took placebo.

Their triglyceride and lipid profiles were then measured.

Overall, there were no differences in the total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol levels between the intervention and control group.

However, compared to the control group, the intervention group had a reduced level of triglyceride (TG) and very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (VLDL-C) concentration – which contains mainly triglyceride.

For example, their triglyceride had dropped from a mean baseline of 158.2mg/dL to 143.4mg/dL, while that of the control group increased from 159.4mg/dL to 179.4mg/dL.

Their VLDL-C concentration also dropped from 31.6mg/dL to 28.7mg/dL, while that of the control group increased from 31.9mg/dL to 35.9mg/dL instead.

Another indicator of the triglyceride-reducing characteristic of the Korean dang-gui is its ability to reduce triglyceride to high density lipoprotein (TG/HDL-C) ratio.

For instance, the TG/HDL-C ratio decreased from 3.23 to 2.87 in the intervention group, while that of the control group increased from 3.34 to 3.87.

This is crucial as a high TG/HDL-C ratio indicates a higher risk of heart attack and stroke.

“These results suggest that the ingestion of gigas nakai extract may improve triglyceride levels and be useful to manage or prevent hypertriglyceridemia,” ​the researchers concluded.


The researchers hypothesised that two compounds in Korean dang-gui, decursin and decursinol angelate, have played a role in suppressing fat formation.

The two compounds were able to do so by activating the Sirt1-AMPK signalling. They

also reduced triglyceride level by accelerating the beta-oxidation of fatty acids.

Strength and limitations

As the subjects were required to follow a standard diet before screening, the compounding effects of dietary factors on triglyceride levels were thus minimised.

However, the researchers also acknowledged a number of limitations with the study, including a small number of participants, which in turn affect the generalisability of the results.

Also, because there were no significant changes in the other blood lipid profiles (TC, LDL-C, and HDL-C) in the intervention group, there is thus a need for future study to validate the efficacy of Korean dang-gui in the long term.


Source: Nutrients

A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial Assessing the Effects of Angelica Gigas Nakai Extract on Blood Triglycerides

DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12020377

Authors: Su-Jin Jung, Woo-Rim Kim, and et al

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