It’s still early in the game, but people with diabetes may want to consider boosting blood sugar control with the potent antioxidant harbored in red wine and grape skins often touted for heart health, says Heather Hausenblas, Ph.D., Director of the University of Florida’s Exercise Psychology Laboratory. In a recent study, diabetics taking a concentrated resveratrol product for three months boosted blood sugar control while lowering total cholesterol and blood pressure compared to the control group.
In early 2012, National Institute of Health researchers and their colleagues reported that resveratrol may confer its health benefits by attaching to and inhibiting a category of proteins called phosphodiesterases or PDEs. This important discovery may help settle the debate surrounding the natural product’s biochemistry and pave the way for resveratrol-based therapies.
“Resveratrol has potential for treating diverse diseases such as type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and heart disease,” says lead study author Jay H. Chung, M.D., Ph.D., chief of the Laboratory of Obesity and Aging Research at the National Institute of Health’s National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. “However, before researchers can transform resveratrol into a safe and effective medicine, they need to know exactly what it targets in cells.”
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