A study that has potential for dietary management of the disease showed that consuming a small amount of protein before meals helps people with type 2 diabetes control their blood sugar. The work shows for the first time that it works in people as they lead normal daily lives. In one study, which holds potential for the dietary management of the disease, people with type 2 diabetes drank a pre-prepared dose containing a low dose of whey protein before meals. They were monitored for a week as they went about their normal daily lives.
To compare the potential benefits of whey protein, the same participants also spent a week drinking a control dose that contained no protein to measure the results against each other. The results of continuous glucose monitoring revealed that glucose levels were much better controlled when taking the whey supplement before meals. On average, they had an additional two hours per day of normal blood sugar compared to the week without protein. Additionally, their daily blood sugar levels were 0.6 mmol/L lower than when they consumed the supplement without any protein.
Dr Daniel West, a senior lecturer and researcher working at the Center for Human Nutrition Research and the Diabetes Research Group at the University of Newcastle, UK, said: “While studies Previous studies of a few hours in the laboratory have shown the potential of this dietary intervention, this is the first time that people have been monitored in their normal lives.”We believe that whey protein works in two ways, first, by slowing the speed at which food passes through the digestive system and secondly, by stimulating a number of important hormones that keep blood sugar levels from climbing so high.
“As we see an increasing number of people around the world developing diabetes, it becomes more important to investigate the potential of alternatives to medications such as dietary supplements.” 18 people with type 2 diabetes drank a small drink – in a 100ml dose – with 15 grams of protein 10 minutes before breakfast, lunch and dinner for seven days and stayed on their diabetes medications prescribed. Continuous Glucose Monitoring automatically tracked blood glucose levels throughout the week.
Newcastle University doctoral student Kieran Smith, who oversaw the blood sugar monitoring and analyzed the data, said: “People were able to stick to the diet and liked the idea of having a little convenient and tasty pre-made drink that could be carried with them and taken before meals.” The team intends to further explore the benefits of non-medical interventions by conducting the study on a larger scale and for a longer period of up to six months. They also plan to look at alternative proteins, such as those that come from plant sources like peas, mushrooms, and potatoes to open up options for vegan and religious dietary needs. (ANI)
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