2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

Gamma Oryzanol Uses, Benefits & Side Effects – Drugs.com Herbal Database

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

Rice bran oil is extracted from the bran fraction of rice, the kernels or seeds of the rice plant. It contains large amounts of gamma oryzanol, a mixture of antioxidant compounds.

The outer chaff of the rice seed is milled off to produce brown rice; further milling removes the bran portion (the rest of the husk and the germ portions), creating white rice. The rice plant has long, slender leaves, and small wind-pollinated flowers.

The species is native to South Asia and some parts of Africa but is cultivated widely. As a cereal grain, it is a major source of nutrition for a large portion of the world's population.

Common Name(s)

Gamma oryzanol is also known as rice bran oil, rice bran wax, rice bran protein, gamma oryzanol, and gammariza.

What is it used for?

Rice bran oil is used extensively, especially in Asia, for cooking. It has a nut- flavor and a high smoke point, making it suitable for deep frying and cooking at high temperatures. Rice bran extracts are used in the cosmetic industry.

Isolation, extraction, and purification of gamma oryzanol were first reported in the mid-1950s. It has been sold in Japan as a medicine since 1962, first to treat anxiety and later in menopause. Gamma oryzanol and rice bran oil therapy have been used to manage elevated cholesterol and triglyceride levels since the late 1980s.

Clinical trial data are often of poor methodology, making it difficult to support suggested clinical applications; however, rice bran oil and its components may have applications in high cholesterol, cancer, and dermatology.

Rice bran oil has been used in doses of up to 800 mg daily in clinical studies in high cholesterol. Purified gamma oryzanol has been used at a daily dose of 500 mg/day.


Contraindications have not yet been identified; however, use of products containing phytic acid, a chemical constituent of rice seed, is not advised in patients with poor kidney function.


Information regarding safety and efficacy in pregnancy and lactation is lacking.

Side Effects

Rice bran oil and extracts are considered to be very safe, with only a low incidence of minor allergic reactions reported.


Concerns regarding toxicity are largely due to an incident in the late 1960s in Japan when contaminated rice bran oil affected at least 1,800 people.

However, rice bran oil has not been shown to cause mutations, or cancer in short-term animal studies.

An increase in bladder cancer has been associated with exposure to the sodium salt of phytic acid, but not the potassium or magnesium salts, and an increase of lung cancer has been suggested for high-dose gamma oryzanol.


1. Gamma Oryzanol. Review of Natural Products. Facts & Comparisons [database online]. St. Louis, MO: Wolters Kluwer Health Inc; December 2010.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Medical Disclaimer

Source: https://www.drugs.com/npc/gamma-oryzanol.html

Exploiting the bioactive properties of γ-oryzanol from bran of different exotic rice varieties – Food & Function (RSC Publishing)

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

Author affiliations

* Corresponding authors

a Instituto Nacional de Investigação Agrária e Veterinária, I.P., Unidade de Tecnologia e Inovação (INIAV/UTI), Av. da República, Quinta do Marquês, 2784-505 Oeiras, Portugal
E-mail: Carla.brites@iniav.pt

b GreenUPorto/DGAOT, Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto, Campus de Vairão, Rua da Agrária, 747, 4485-646 Vila do Conde, Portugal

c Centro de Investigação de Montanha (CIMO), Instituto Politécnico de Bragança, Campus de Santa Apolónia, 5300-253 Bragança, Portugal

d Institute for Biological Research “Siniša Stanković”, University of Belgrade, Bulevar Despota Stefana 142, Belgrade, Serbia

The rice industry is one of the most significant food industries since rice is a widely consumed cereal in the world. As a result of this substantial production, the rice industry has a significant amount of side streams, including bran, representing millions of tons of raw materials mainly designated to animal feed.

Rice bran is a rich source of γ-oryzanol, a bioactive compound with substantial health benefits.

In this perspective, different bran rice samples from distinct germplasm origins (Philippines, Italy and Portugal) were studied for their γ-oryzanol content by HPLC-PDA, cytotoxicity in four human tumour cell lines, hepatotoxicity in a normal cell line and for their antimicrobial effects on different bacterial and fungal strains.

The Ballatinao sample presented the strongest activity against all the tumour cell lines, and was also the sample showing the highest amount of γ-oryzanol, suggesting its contribution to the exhibited cytotoxic properties.

Regarding the antimicrobial activity, the tested samples were able to inhibit the majority of bacterial and fungal strains, with the Portuguese Ceres sample being the one presenting the highest bacterial inhibition and the Maluit and Dinorado samples, the highest fungal inhibition. Overall, the results show that rice bran extracts may be considered as potential candidates for antimicrobial agents when incorporated into food matrices.

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Back to tab navigation https://doi.org/10.1039/C8FO02596G Food Funct., 2019,10, 2382-2389
A. Castanho, M. Lageiro, R. C. Calhelha, I. C. F. R. Ferreira, M. Sokovic, L. M. Cunha and C. Brites, Food Funct.

, 2019, 10, 2382

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Source: https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlelanding/2019/fo/c8fo02596g

Gamma Oryzanol Market Size To Reach $2.06 Billion By 2022

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

April 2016 | Report Format: Electronic (PDF)

The global gamma oryzanol market is expected to reach USD 2.06 billion by 2022, according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc. Increasing consumer awareness towards a healthy lifestyle is expected to drive product demand over the next seven years.

Improper diet intake coupled with rising health treatment expenditure has urged consumers to switch to alternatives, such as dietary supplements, that offers a balanced diet. Gamma oryzanol plays a significant role in boosting good cholesterol and minimize adverse impacts of unhealthy diet intake.

Rapid urbanization coupled with increasing participation in health clubs and fitness activities are expected to play a vital role in industry growth over the forecast period. High product price along with the lack of consumer awareness are expected to remain major factors hindering market growth.

Technological innovation in the industry includes research initiatives to enhance yield rate from rice bran oil that is anticipated to reduce production costs and enable market players to attain economies of scale. Ongoing technological innovations along with increasing R&D spending is expected to provide significant opportunities for gamma oryzanol manufacturers over the forecast period.

Sports supplement emerged as the principal application segment and accounted for over 40% of total revenue in 2014. The segment is anticipated to witness moderate growth rate owing to high requirement of gamma oryzanol as an essential supplement for sports nutrition.

 To request a sample copy or view summary of this report, click the link below:

Further key findings from the report suggest:

  • The global gamma oryzanol market demand was 11,520.0 tons in 2014 and is expected to reach 18,597.8 tons by 2022, growing at an estimated CAGR of 6.2% from 2015 to 2022
  • Gamma oryzanol demand in cosmetic applications is anticipated to witness the highest growth over the forecast period. The segment is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 6.9% in terms of demand from 2015 to 2022.
  • The product demand in animal feed in the U.S. was over 710 tons in 2014. High requirement of the micronutrient in horses and dogs to enhance muscle development may be attributed to significant development in the segment.
  • Europe was the leading regional market and accounted for 30% of total consumption in 2014. The increasing acceptance of sports supplements as an essential form of nutrition in the UK, Italy, and Germany is expected to remain a key factor driving regional market.
  • Asia Pacific is estimated to witness the highest growth of 7.1%over the forecast period. Abundant raw material availability coupled with significant developments in cosmetics and animal feed sectors particularly in Japan, China, Vietnam, and India are anticipated to steer industry growth.
  • Key players operating in the global gamma oryzanol market include Oryza Oil & Fat Chemical Co., Ltd., Jining Ankang Pharmaceutical, Honson Pharmatech Group, KangCare Bioindustry, Lamotte Oils, Tsuno Rice, Xi’an Realin Biotechnology, Shanghai Freemen LLC, Chromadex Inc., and Sunrise Nutrachem Group Co. Ltd.

Grand View Research has segmented the gamma oryzanol market on the basis of application and region:

Global Gamma Oryzanol Application Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 – 2022)

  • Sports supplements
  • Cosmetics
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Animal feed

Global Gamma Oryzanol Regional Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 – 2022)

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia Pacific 
  • Central & South America
  • Middle East & Africa
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  • Gamma Oryzanol Market Analysis By Application (Sports Supplement, Cosmetics, Pharmaceuticals, Animal Feed) And Segment Forecasts To 2022

Source: https://www.grandviewresearch.com/press-release/global-gamma-oryzanol-market

γ-Oryzanols of North American Wild Rice ( Zizania palustris )

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

γ-Oryzanol, a natural mixture of ferulic acid esters of triterpene alcohols and sterols, are an important bioactive components present in rice bran oil.

In light of the recent increase in the popularity of wild rice among consumers, and the possibility of a direct relationship between γ-oryzanol composition and its bioactivity, the oryzanol profile of major wild rice (Zizania palustris) grown in North America was studied and compared to regular brown rice (Oryza sativa L.).

A total of twenty-three γ-oryzanol components were separated, identified and quantified by HPLC coupled to an Orbitrap MS. The distribution of individual γ-oryzanols was similar for all the wild rice but significantly different from those of the regular brown rice. Un in the regular brown rice, a significant amount of steryl caffeate and cinnamate were found in the wild rice samples.

Generally, the amounts of γ-oryzanol in the wild rice were higher compared to the regular brown rice, 1,352 vs. 688 μg/g. The results from this study showed that wild rice had a more diverse γ-oryzanol composition and the higher amounts compared to the regular brown rice.

Rice (Oryza sativa) is the staple food for two-thirds of the world’s population [1]. In response to the expected world population growth, the International Rice Research Institute predicted that 800 million tons of rice will be required in 2025 [2].

With worldwide rice production currently less than the population growth rate, a significant increase in the consumption of wild rice (Zizania spp.) is expected.

Indeed, the utilization of wild rice is gaining popularity among consumers, and it is grown and commonly available in the North American supermarkets and restaurants.

Rice contains many bioactive nutrients including: γ-oryzanol, phytic acid, tocopherols, tocotrienols, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin and folic acid.

γ-Oryzanol, a mixture of ferulic acid esters of triterpene alcohols and phytosterols is chiefly responsible for many of the observed health benefits of rice and rice products [3].

γ-Oryzanol has been shown to possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor, and hypocholesterolemic activities [4–8], and has been approved for the treatment of nerve imbalances and menopausal disorders [9].

The origin, environmental factors, and genotype affects the composition, as well as the amount of individual components of γ-oryzanol in standard rice [10, 11]. Also, inconsistent data on the numbers and composition of individual components of γ-oryzanol are often reported in the literature depending on the analytical procedures employed [12].

Whereas the majority of the studies have focussed on the total amount of γ-oryzanol in rice products [13–17], a detailed profiling of the individual components is of paramount importance especially in the light of emerging evidence suggesting significant differences in the physiological activity of individual phytosterol ferulates.

For instance, 24-methylenecycloartanyl ferulate has been shown to be a more efficient inhibitor of 2,2′-azobis(2-methylpropionamidine) dihydrochloride accelerated cholesterol oxidation in vitro than either cycloartenyl or campesteryl ferulates [18].

Also, dimethyl sterols, cycloartenyl and 24-methylenecycloartanyl were more effective than various 4,4′-desmethyl phytosterols against 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate induced inflammatory activity [4].

Although several studies have been undertaken on the separation and quantification of γ-oryzanol in regular rice (Oryza sativa), to the best of our knowledge, no data are available on the oryzanol profile of North American wild rice (Zizania palustris).

In a recently published study, Przybylski et al.

[17] reported composition of lipid components of North America wild rice revealing that the lipids are an excellent source of essential fatty acids and significant amounts of nutraceuticals including γ-oryzanol, however, the γ-oryzanol content was quantified as a group of steryl ferulates. Thus, the main objective of the present study was to assess the composition and contribution of individual components of γ-oryzanol in North American commercial wild rice in comparison with regular brown rice.

Samples of commercial wild rice were obtained from the following suppliers, the abbreviation in the parentheses following the name of the rice is used henceforth in this paper: Minnesota Natural Lake (MNL; C & G Enterprises, MN, USA), Minnesota Naturally Grown Lake & River (MNGLR; Moose Lake Wild Rice Company, MN, USA), Minnesota Cultivated Wild Rice (MC; Moose Lake Wild Rice Company, MN, USA), Athabasca Alberta (AA; Alice Ptolemy Lakeland Wild Rice, Athabasca, AB, Canada), North Western Ontario (NOW; Shoal Lake Wild Rice, Winnipeg, MB, Canada), Manitoba Far North (FNM; Far North Wild Rice, MB, Canada), and Saskatchewan (S; Points North Wild Rice Company, Yorkton, SK, Canada). Regular medium (MGR) and long grain (LGR) brown rice were obtained from Riceland Foods (AR, USA) and used as references.


Acetonitrile and isopropanol used in the study were of LC–MS grade and were obtained from Fisher Scientific Co. (Toronto, ON, Canada).

Ultrapure deionized water was purified by a Nanopure Diamond laboratory water system (Barnstead, Dubuque, IA, USA). All other solvents and chemicals were of analytical grade and were purchased from Sigma-Aldrich (St. Louis, MO, USA).

γ-Oryzanol was a kind gift from the Oryza Oil and Fat Chemical Co. Ltd. (Ichinomiya-City, Japan).

Extraction of γ-Oryzanol

γ-Oryzanols were isolated from the rice samples utilizing sonic assisted methanol extraction (SAME) [19].

Briefly, ground wild rice kernels (1 g) were weighed into a threaded tube then 10 mL of methanol added and vortexed for 1 min, followed by sonication at 50 °C for 1 h.

Extraction was repeated three times with fresh methanol and the combined extract was centrifuged at 5,000 rpm for 30 min. The supernatant was evaporated to 5 mL and subsequently analyzed by HPLC–MS.


High performance liquid chromatography was carried out using an Accela HPLC system equipped with an Accela 1,250 pump and autosampler (Thermo Fischer Scientific, West Palm Beach, FL). The sample was separated at 25 °C on a Kinetex C18 column (2.6 μm; 150 × 3 mm; Phenomenex, MA) using a mobile phase consisting of acetonitrile, water and isopropanol with the following gradient:

Time (min) Acetonitrile Water Isopropanol Flow rate (mL/min)
0 20 80 0 0.30
15 80 5 15 0.30
30 82 0 18 0.30
50 100 0 0 0.60
56 100 0 0 0.60
57 20 80 0 0.30
60 20 80 0 0.30

Injection volume was 10 μL and the UV detector was at 325 nm (Accela PDA). γ-Oryzanol components were identified with Exactive Orbitrap MS (Thermo Fischer Scientific, West Palm Beach, FL, USA).

The mass spectrometer was equipped with an ESI ion source, operated in both positive and negative mode. Xcalibur software was used for data acquisition and analysis.

The mass spectrometer conditions were optimized for γ-oryzanol by infusion of an oryzanol standard at 5 μL/min into a 300 μL/min flow of mobile phase containing 85 % acetonitrile, 10 % isopropanol and 5 % water. The ESI ion source capillary temperature was set at 275 °C; the sheath gas flow rate at 25, and the auxiliary gas flow at 5.

The capillary and tube lens voltages were at 55 and 110 V, respectively for positive mode, and −45 and −95 V, respectively, for negative mode. The spray voltage was +4.00 kV for positive mode and −3.97 kV for negative mode. Fragmentation of components was achieved by Higher Energy Collision Induced Dissociation (HCD) fragmentation at 100 eV.

The spectra were collected in a range of 100–800 m/z at a scan rate of 1 scan/s. To prevent rapid contamination of the ion source by the crude extract, the first and the last 10 min of effluent from the HPLC were diverted to waste using a Rheodyne automated switching valve.

Quantification of γ-oryzanol components was achieved by external calibration using the average areas of the six major steryl ferulates in the standard mixture (~98 % of total oryzanol), and assuming that the extinction coefficients for ferulic acid for all peaks were the same, following Britz et al. method [20].

Statistical Analysis

Extraction of γ-oryzanols and HPLC–MS analyses were performed in triplicate and data are presented as means ± SD.

Data were analyzed by single factor analysis of variance (ANOVA) and regression analysis using Minitab 2,000 statistical software (Minitab Inc. PA, ver. 15).

Statistically significant differences between means were determined by Duncan’s multiple range tests for P ≤ 0.05.

Results and Discussion

The chromatogram in Fig. 1 shows the twenty-three γ-oryzanol components separated in the present study, their identities are reported in Table 1. The identification of the components was the molecular mass determined by mass spectrometer, which agreed with the calculated values, and were also compared to the retention data of standards (chromatogram A; Fig. 1).

In agreement with previously published data [18, 20, 21], cycloartenol trans-ferulate (m/z 601), 24-methylenecycloartanol trans-ferulate (m/z 615), campesterol trans-ferulate (m/z 575), and sitosterol trans-ferulate (m/z 589) were the major components, representing up to 90 % in the control brown rice and averaged of 75 % in the wild rice samples. Indeed, the amounts of 24-methylenecycloartanol trans-ferulate (249 μg/g), cycloartenol trans-ferulate (171 μg/g), and total γ-oryzanol (688 μg/g) obtained in the present study for long grain regular brown rice are in agreement with those reported by Cho et al. [21]. Significant differences, however, were observed in the contents of campesterol trans-ferulate and sitosterol trans-ferulate between the two studies, which could be due to differences in analytical procedures as earlier mentioned [12]. Fang et al. [12] identified three isomers of cycloartenol trans-ferulate in rice bran oil, in the present study; two isomers were identified in the control brown rice while four were identified in the wild rice samples (Fig. 1b, c).

Fig. 1

HPLC chromatograms of γ-oryzanol standards (a), regular Medium Grain and Long Grain brown rice (b), and Minnesota Natural Lake, MNL (c); similar patterns were observed for other samples of the wild rice. See Table 1 for identity of compounds

Table 1 Composition and content of γ-oryzanol in wild and regular brown rice

The amount of total γ-oryzanol found in the wild rice samples ranged from 850 to 1,352 μg/g with MNL containing the highest and NOW the lowest amounts, these data are in agreement with a previous study by Przybylski et al. [17].

The higher amounts of γ-oryzanol reported in the present study compared to the previous study [17] may be due to the differences in extraction methods and the inclusion of better separation of new components: 8, 9, 21, 22 (Table 1) in the total amount of γ-oryzanol.

Although some significant differences (P 

Source: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11746-013-2252-x

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

Although gamma oryzanol, a compound found in rice bran, has been used in Japan for decades, studies are still uncovering its many potential health benefits. Read on to find out why this supplement is gaining in popularity.

What Is Gamma Oryzanol?

Gamma oryzanol occurs in rice bran oil at a level of 1 to 2%. It comprises a mixture of ferulic acid esters and phytosterols [1, 2].

Apart from rice, it is also found in wheat, maize, rye, triticale, and barley, but at much lower levels [3].

It has been used as a supplement in Japan since the early 70s.

Gamma oryzanol is believed to:

  • Lower bad cholesterol. Phytosterols (plant sterols) found in this supplement have a structure similar to cholesterol and are well known for their LDL-cholesterol-lowering effect [4].
  • Reduce inflammation [5, 6].
  • Lower blood glucose [7].
  • Exert antioxidant activity. This is due to ferulic acid, a strong antioxidant that protects cells from reactive oxygen species (ROS) [8, 9].

Gamma oryzanol is commonly used as an exercise supplement as well as to build muscles. However, the results regarding muscle strength are controversial. It is much more promising as a supplement to decrease cholesterol.

Mechanisms of Action

Researchers believe that gamma oryzanol could decrease cholesterol by:

  • Decreasing the uptake of cholesterol by gut cells [10].
  • Decreasing HMG-CoA reductase activity. HMG-CoA reductase is an enzyme that promotes cholesterol production [10, 11].
  • Blocking the formation of micelles, which are small aggregates of molecules that often contain cholesterol [10, 12].

Researchers further believe that this supplement could lower inflammation by:

  • Decreasing NF-kB – the master-regulator of inflammation [13].
  • Decreasing inflammatory molecules PGE2, COX-2, TNF-alpha, and IL-6 [5, 6].
  • Lowering CRP – a marker of chronic low-grade inflammation [14].

Gamma oryzanol also has antioxidant activity in cells [15].

In animals and cells, it lowers blood glucose levels by increasing PPAR-γ and C/EBPα, which increases the uptake of glucose by cells [7].

Potential Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol

Gamma oryzanol supplements have not been approved by the FDA for medical use. Supplements generally lack solid clinical research. Regulations set manufacturing standards for them but don’t guarantee that they’re safe or effective. Speak with your doctor before supplementing.

1) Cholesterol

Gamma oryzanolblocks the uptake of cholesterol by gut cells, as it decreases HMG-CoA reductase, an enzyme that promotes cholesterol production. This supplement also increases cholesterol removal by bile acids [10, 16].

In 30 men with high cholesterol, rice bran oil, with varying amounts of gamma oryzanol, was able to lower total and LDL cholesterol levels. However, there was little difference between the cholesterol-lowering effects of the high and low gamma oryzanol-containing rice bran oil [17].

Gamma oryzanol decreased total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels in 20 schizophrenia patients with high cholesterol [18].

In another study, this supplement lowered cholesterol and improved fat metabolism in rats fed a high-cholesterol diet [19].

The compound was effective in lowering LDL-cholesterol levels and increasing HDL-cholesterol in rats. Low HDL and high LDL-cholesterol increase the risk of heart disease [20, 21].

Gamma oryzanol decreased cholesterol levels in hamsters with high cholesterol [22].

It also lowered cholesterol absorption by 20% and increased cholesterol removal by bile acids in rats [16].

Insufficient Evidence For

The following purported benefits are only supported by limited, low-quality clinical studies. There is insufficient evidence to support the use of gamma oryzanol for any of the below-listed uses. Remember to speak with a doctor before taking gamma oryzanol supplements, and never use it in place of something your doctor recommends or prescribes.

2) Muscle Strength

A study of 30 healthy participants found that gamma oryzanol improved bench press and leg curl results, showing that the supplement may have improved muscle strength during resistance training [23].

However, another study on 22 weight-trained men showed that nine weeks of gamma oryzanol supplementation did not influence performance [24].

Animal Research (Lacking Evidence)

No clinical evidence supports the use of gamma oryzanol for any of the conditions listed in this section. Below is a summary of the existing animal and cell-based research, which should guide further investigational efforts. However, the studies listed below should not be interpreted as supportive of any health benefit.

3) Atherosclerosis

Rice bran enzymatic extract (containing gamma oryzanol) lowered cholesterol and prevented atherosclerotic plaque development in atherosclerosis-prone mice on a high-fat diet [25, 26].

This compound decreased cholesterol and reduced “aortic fatty streaks” in hamsters. Fatty streaks are the first visible damage in the hardening of the arteries [27].

However, it was ineffective in treating the hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) in rabbits [28].

4) Diabetes

Gamma oryzanol improved glucose levels in mice by improving the function and survival of pancreatic beta cells (cells that release insulin) [29].

This compound directly acts on pancreatic cells to enhance glucose-stimulated insulin release [30].

Also, it directly enhances glucose uptake by fat cells (adipocytes) [7].

This supplement effectively prevented the decrease of adiponectin levels in mice. Low adiponectin is a risk factor for diabetes [31].

Gamma oryzanol increased insulin sensitivity in rats with type 2 diabetes [32].

When pregnant mice are fed a high-fat diet, their offspring develop insulin resistance. Gamma oryzanol given to pregnant mice prevented the development of insulin resistance in the offspring [33].

5) Obesity

A study performed on rats suggests that gamma oryzanol can combat obesity by blocking dopamine receptors (D2R) in the brain (striatum). These receptors are part of the brain reward system. They are increased by a high-fat diet, resulting in hedonic overeating [34].

This compound reduced the preference for dietary fats, and reduced obesity and fat accumulation in rats fed a high-fat and high-fructose diet [35, 14].

It also decreased the production of fat cells (adipocytes) [36].

6) Skin Health

When delivered under the skin via an injection, gamma oryzanol protected against skin-aging and improved wrinkles in 15 people and UV radiation-exposed rats [37].

Also, when it was incorporated into a cream and applied to the skin, it hydrated and lightened the skin [38].

7) Osteoporosis

This compound increased bone density and calcium content in a rat model of osteoporosis (female rats that had their ovaries removed) [39].

Another study found that it increased bone formation-related genes in rats (SP7/OSX, POSTN, RUNX2, and COL1 and 2) [40].

8) Inflammation

In rats, gamma oryzanol decreased inflammatory mediators such as PGE2, TNF-alpha, and IL-6 [5].

This supplement reduced lung inflammation in rats with sepsis [41].

It also decreased IL-6 and a marker of chronic low-grade inflammation, CRP, in rats with metabolic syndrome [14].

Gamma oryzanol also decreases other inflammatory parameters, such as COX-2 and Nf-kB [13, 6].

9) Anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis is an extreme allergic reaction characterized by swelling and difficulty breathing.

A component of gamma oryzanol called cycloartenol ferulate was able to reduce mast cell degranulation (mast cells release histamine and other inflammatory agents), which decreased the anaphylaxis reaction in rats [42].

10) Hair Growth

A rice bran extract containing gamma oryzanol promoted hair growth and the formation of new hair follicles in mice [43].

11) Immune Response

This supplement increased cytokines IL-8 and CCL2 and enhanced the activity of macrophages ( a type of white blood cell) important for the innate immune responses [44].

12) Heavy Metal Toxicity

This compound protected mice against cadmium-induced testicular toxicity and oxidative stress [45].

13) Ulcers

In a couple of studies, gamma oryzanol prevented stress-induced ulcers in rats [46, 47].

Cancer Research

Gamma oryzanol inhibited colon tumor growth in mice, probably by [48]:

Cycloartenol ferulate, a component of gamma oryzanol, reduced the growth of skin tumors in mice [49].

Gamma oryzanol inhibited the growth of human prostate cancer cells [50, 51].

However, a study on rats reported a rare side effect of gamma oryzanol: promoting lung cancer. But its effect is weak and occurs only at a very high dosage [52].

Gamma oryzanol has not been studied in human cancer patients. We strongly recommend against using it without first consulting your doctor.

Limitations and Caveats

Most of the studies on gamma oryzanol have been in animals or cells, which may or may not translate and apply to human health.

Despite the frequent use of gamma oryzanol by athletes as a strength supplement, there is limited evidence available to support the effects of this compound on muscle strength during resistance training [23].

The testosterone-lowering effects of gamma oryzanol are only theoretical and haven’t yet been proven [53].

Further studies are needed to confirm that gamma oryzanol reduces HMG-CoA reductase activity in humans [10].

Gamma Oryzanol and Hormones

Gamma oryzanol did not influence testosterone, cortisol, estradiol, growth hormone, or insulin levels in humans [24].

Another study found that an injection of gamma oryzanol into rats suppressed growth hormone and prolactin release [54].

This compound was a potent inhibitor of luteinizing hormone release and a weak inhibitor of prolactin in rats [55].

It lowered thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels in 6 of the 8 studied hypothyroid patients the blood [56].


Gamma oryzanol and its source, rice bran oil, are generally considered to be safe, with little to no side effects reported in studies.

Gamma oryzanol is a promoter of lung cancer in rats, but its effect is weak and occurs only at a very high dosage [52].

It was found to be not carcinogenic (cancer-causing) in studies on experimental mice and rats [57, 58].


There is no safe and effective dose of gamma oryzanol for any health purpose because no sufficiently powered study has been conducted to find one. That said, clinical studies have found benefits associated with certain doses.

Some studies used a lower dose of around 50 to 60 mg daily [59, 60].

One study (referenced in a review) administered gamma oryzanol thrice daily at 20 mg [59].

Others used a higher dose, between 300 and 800 mg daily [61, 23].

Source: https://selfhacked.com/blog/gamma-oryzanol/

Compound in Rice Bran Oil Protects Nerve Cells in ALS Models, Study Finds

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

A compound found in rice bran oil may lower oxidative stress levels and may be beneficial to people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, an early study in fruit flies and disease-related cell models shows.

These findings were reported in the study “γ-Oryzanol mitigates oxidative stress and prevents mutant SOD1-Related neurotoxicity in Drosophila and cell models of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis” that was published in Neuropharmacology journal.

An imbalance in the production of potentially damaging oxidative compounds and a cell’s ability to detoxify itself — a biological process known as oxidative stress — is reported to be involved in the onset and development of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Studies indicate that about 20% of hereditary ALS cases are triggered by high oxidative stress levels, resulting from genetic mutations in the gene that encodes the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1). SOD1 genetic variants may impair the enzyme’s normal activity and prevent motor nerve cells — the ones most affected in ALS — from being able to get rid of the damaging oxidant compounds.

“Thus, an anti-oxidative stress remedy might be a promising means for the treatment of ALS,” researchers with Harbin Medical University in China wrote.

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Gamma-oryzanol is the main active compound of rice bran oil (extracted from rice husks or chaff), and shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, among other benefits.

Treatment with gamma-oryzanol was seen to hold significant therapeutic effects in experimental models of Parkinson’s disease and prevent excessive oxidative stress in the mice, further supporting its potential as treatment.

The researchers explored the compound’s neuroprotective effects, and its underlying molecular impact, in Drosophila melanogaster (fruit flies) and cell models of ALS. Both models were genetically modified to carry a mutated version of the human SOD1 gene, mimicking some of the main features of hereditary ALS.

Results revealed that gamma-oryzanol treatment could protect mutant SOD1 flies from motor nerve cell loss. Treated flies exhibited improved motor function, reduced oxidative stress damage, improved balance between reactive oxygen species and antioxidant molecules, and longer lifespans than did flies given a placebo.

Further experiments in isolated ALS cells showed that gamma-oryzanol could improve nerve cell survival by 30%–35%, and significantly prevent oxidative damage. These positive actions were mediated through the activation of antioxidant and pro-survival pathways associated with a protein called Akt and its downstream partners.

Akt activity induced by gamma-oryzanol was able to enhance the levels of Hsp70 — a protein that protects cells from various conditions of stress, including oxidative stress — and the pro-survival STAT3 signaling molecule. Akt activation also showed to support antioxidant signals through the Nrf2/GCLC signaling cascade.

Supported by these findings, the team believes that gamma-oryzanol “has potential neuroprotective effects that may be beneficial in the treatment of ALS disease with SOD1 mutations,” as well as for other neurodegenerative disorders.

Source: https://alsnewstoday.com/2019/09/16/rice-bran-oil-compound-may-protect-neuronos-in-als-study-says/

Effects of gamma oryzanol supplementation on anthropometric measurements & muscular strength in healthy males following chronic resistance training

2 Health Benefits of Gamma Oryzanol + Future Research

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Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4164998/