Increased diet viscosity by oat β-glucans decreases the passage rate of liquids in the stomach and affects digesta physicochemical properties in growing pigs

M. Schop*, A.J.M. Jansman, Sonja de Vries, W.J.J. Gerrits

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Rheological properties of digesta play a role in digesta passage kinetics through the gastrointestinal tract, in turn affecting nutrient absorption kinetics. Therefore, we studied the effects of diet viscosity on digesta passage and physicochemical properties in pigs. Twenty male growing pigs (35 kg body weight at the start) were assigned to one of five diets with increasing dietary concentrations of β-glucans (BG; from 0 % to 10 %), in exchange for maize starch. After a 17-day adaptation period, pigs were euthanised and the mean retention time (MRT) of digesta solids (TiO2) and liquids (Cr-EDTA) in the stomach, and proximal and distal half of the small intestine was quantified. In the stomach, the MRT of liquids, but not of solids, increased when dietary BG level increased (6 min per % dietary BG, P = 0.008 and R 2 = 0.35). Concomitantly, stomach DM content (5 g/kg per % dietary BG, P < 0.001 and R 2 = 0.53) and apparent digesta viscosity (56 Pa × s at 1/s shear rate per % dietary BG, P = 0.003 and R 2 = 0.41) decreased. In the proximal half of the small intestine, no effects of dietary BG level were observed. In the distal half of the small intestine, water-binding capacity (WBC) of digesta increased (0.11 g/g digesta DM per % dietary BG, P = 0.028 and R 2 = 0.24) and starch digestibility decreased (0.3% per % dietary BG, P = 0.034 and R 2 = 0.23) when dietary BG level increased. In the colon, apparent digesta viscosity at 45/s shear rate increased (0.1 Pa × s per % dietary BG, P = 0.03 and R 2 = 0.24) in the proximal half of the colon, and digesta WBC increased (0.06 g/g digesta DM per % dietary BG, P = 0.024 and R 2 = 0.26) in the distal half of the colon when dietary BG level increased. To conclude, increasing dietary BG level caused the MRT of liquids, but not that of solids, to increase in the stomach, resulting in reduced separation of the solid and liquid digesta fractions. This caused dilution of the stomach content and reduction in digesta viscosity when dietary BG levels increased. Effects of dietary BG level on physicochemical properties in the proximal small intestine were absent and may have been due to a low DM content. The WBC of digesta in the distal small intestine and colon increased when dietary BG level increased, as did apparent digesta viscosity in the proximal colon. This likely reflects the concentration of BG in digesta when moving through the gastrointestinal tract.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-276
JournalAnimal
Volume14
Issue number2
Early online date13 Aug 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020

Keywords

  • digesta mean retention time
  • digestion kinetics
  • gastrointestinal tract
  • rheology
  • solids

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