By David Saunders, Health Editor | UPDATED: 11:42, 11 November 2019
Researchers have shown for the first time how a compound found only in avocados can inhibit cellular processes in the pancreas that normally lead to diabetes. Dr Sarah Brewer, working on the CuraLife advisory board (www.curalife.co), comments on this new research
Fruit or veg?
“While avocado is often thought of as a vegetable, it is in fact a fruit. Unlike most other fruit, avocados are low in sugar and rich in oils. As much as 30% of the weight of avocado pulp consists of oils, of which 80% are beneficial monounsaturated fats similar to those found in olive oil. Although they have a high energy content, avocados also have one of the highest protein content of any fruit.”
Avocados lead to weight gain: False!
“Many people avoid eating avocados because of their high fat and calorie content. However, they can aid weight loss and are beneficial if you have diabetes. The main sugar found in avocado is a unique form known as D-mannopheptulose which does not act like a conventional sugar. It helps to satisfy sensations of hunger and supports improved blood glucose control and weight management. Together with their protein content, avocadoes are particularly filling so you tend to eat less overall.
“The monounsaturated fat content of avocado also has benefits for glucose control. Research shows that replacing a low-fat, complex-carbohydrate rich diet with an avocado-rich diet can significantly improve blood glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes.”
Avocatin B, compound found only in avocados
“Now, latest research from the University of Guelph suggests that avocado may even protect against type 2 diabetes by inhibiting some of the abnormal cell metabolic processes that occur in diabetes. A particular molecule that is unique to avocados, and known as avocatin B can reduce insulin resistance in skeletal muscle and pancreas cells. Healthy volunteers who took avocatin B extracts as a dietary supplement lost some weight while continuing to eat their normal diet, and no safety concerns were highlighted. Trials in people with type 2 diabetes are now planned.”
More Self-help Remedies
“Medicine is moving away from the old paradigm of ‘diagnose and treat’ towards one of ‘self-help and prevent.’ Pharmacists and other healthcare professionals are providing increasing support for people who prefer to take more control over their own health. Healing systems such as Ayurveda, which uses more natural approaches such as herbal medicines, are also increasing in popularity.”
“The blend of 10 Ayurvedic herbs within CuraLin (£59, www.curalife.co) have a range of beneficial effects on glucose control and metabolism. As a result, users report that their glucose control quickly improves and, in some cases, normalises within 4 weeks. Users also report reduced cravings for sweet food, and experience improved energy, sleep and general quality of life.”