Diabetes is a disease can shorten normal lifespan by as much as 10 to 15 years when left unchecked, and worse, it can dramatically lower quality of life as the inevitable complications impair vision, renal health and nerve function.
People tend to view diabetes as a relatively benign illness because the immediate symptoms are largely silent and medical professionals are quick to prescribe any of a number of worthless pharmaceuticals that have little impact on disease progression and increased risk of an early demise.
These same people would likely be shocked to know that small dietary and lifestyle changes can help to stop this deadly disease in its tracks, far better than any Big Pharma concoction to stimulate an ailing pancreas to produce more insulin and force glucose into cells.
A mounting volume of evidence continues to accumulate indicating that a bounty of natural compounds known as flavonoids help to normalize metabolic syndrome and the onset of diabetes, especially when coupled with a systematic reduction in dietary sugars and refined carbohydrates.
Natural Food Compounds Lower Inflammation to Thwart Diabetes Risk Factors
A study team from Kings College London and the University of East Anglia in the UK, publishing the results of their work in The Journal of Nutrition has found that consuming high levels of flavonoids, found in foods such as chocolate, tea, berries and wine, may help protect against type II diabetes, likely due to reduced insulin resistance and improved glucose regulation. The research team analyzed 1,997 female volunteers aged between 18 and 76 years, and asked them to complete a food questionnaire in an effort to estimate their total dietary flavonoid consumption and their intake from six flavonoid subclasses: anthocyanins, flavanones, flavan-3-ols, polymeric flavonoids, flavonols, and flavones.
The scientists determined that those women consuming the highest levels of flavones had improved levels of a protein called adiponectin, a known regulator of glucose levels and other metabolic mechanisms. Additionally, the researchers found that women who consumed the most anthocyanins were the least likely to have chronic inflammation, a condition linked to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity and cancer.
Lead study author, Dr. Aedin Cassidy commented, “We showed that the anthocyanins, compounds responsible for the red/blue color of berries and other fruits and vegetables, can improve the way we handle glucose and insulin and reduce inflammation, a risk factor for heart disease and diabetes… these data suggest we should be eating more of these flavonoid-rich foods in our diet.” The cocoa flavonoid found in dark chocolate (cocoa content above 75 percent) was found to have the most dramatic effect on reducing blood pressure, levels of inflammation, improved blood flow and arterial elasticity.
Increase Flavonoid Consumption and Lower Dietary Sugars and Refined Carbs to Prevent Diabetes
Dr. Cassidy and his team concluded “In general, dark chocolate contains more of the powerful bioactive compounds, and addition of a small amount of chocolate to an otherwise healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables could be important for prevention efforts to reduce the risk of heart disease and type II diabetes.” Adding 3 to 5 daily servings of natural foods that infuse healthy amounts of flavonoids throughout the body, while limiting or eliminating sugary and processed foods may hold the key to lowering diabetes risk and preventing related complications that limit lifespan in many unsuspecting individuals.
John Phillip is a Certified Nutritional Consultant and diet, health and nutrition researcher and author with a passion for understanding weight loss challenges and encouraging health modification through natural diet, lifestyle and targeted supplementation. John’s passion is to research and write about the cutting edge alternative health technologies that affect our lives. Discover the latest alternative health news concerning diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia and weight loss at My Optimal Health Resource