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High-fibre diet can help manage Type 2 diabetes

Raghu Kshitiz

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High-fibre diet can help manage Type 2 diabetes. Representational Image

NEW YORK — Consuming more of dietary fibres that promote a type of gut bacteria, leading to better blood glucose control, may help in the fight against Type 2 diabetes, researchers have discovered.

The findings, published Friday in the journal Science, showed that a diversified high fibre diet can promote 15 strains of gut bacteria which produce short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) provide energy to gut cells, reduce inflammation and help regulate hunger.

The six-year long study, led by Rutgers University, shows that these dietary fibers may rebalance the gut microbiota, the ecosystem of bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract that help digest food.

“Our study lays the foundation and opens the possibility that fibers targeting this group of gut bacteria could eventually become a major part of your diet and your treatment,” said lead author Liping Zhao, a professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences at Rutgers University-New Brunswick, in a press release.

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In research based in China, Zhao and scientists from Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Yan Lam, a research assistant professor in Zhao’s lab at Rutgers, studied patients with type 2 diabetes in two groups.

In a 27-person treatment group, participants were was given a large amount of many types of dietary fibers, along with a similar diet for energy and major nutrients.

A control group of 16, meanwhile, received standard patient education and dietary recommendations. Both groups also took the drug acarbose to help control blood glucose.

After 12 weeks, patients on the high-fibre diet had greater reduction in a three-month average of blood glucose levels.In addition, their fasting blood glucose levels dropped faster and they lost more weight than the standard care group.

Only 15 of the 141 identifiable strains of short-chain fatty acid-producing gut bacteria are likely to be the key drivers of better health, researchers say, but they became the dominant strains in the gut after boosting short-chain fatty acids butyrate and acetate. They also led to increased insulin production and better blood glucose control.

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Many bacteria break down carbohydrates, such as dietary fibers, and produce short-chain fatty acids that nourish cells lining the gut. In turn, they reduce inflammation and help control appetite.

But in diabetes and other diseases, there a shortage of bacteria’s short-chain fatty acids.

Researchers say they plan further studies to determine if greater changes to the gut microbiota could do more to help treat type 2 diabetes.

With Agency Inputs

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Single blood test might be enough to diagnose diabetes

Gorkha Post

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A new study report has suggested that it may be possible to diagnose type 2 diabetes by measuring fasting blood glucose and hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) using the same blood sample without requiring a patient to come back for a second visit and saving patients time and health care cost.

The findings, from the prospective Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study, were published online June 19 in Annals of Internal Medicine by Elizabeth Selvin, PhD, of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, and colleagues.

Until now, it’s recommended that a blood test focused on elevated fasting levels of blood sugar (glucose) or a blood component called glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) be confirmed with a second blood test at a follow-up visit which takes time and money and could still result in missed diagnoses, said a team from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

In the new study, researchers led by Hopkins epidemiologist Elizabeth Selvin looked at data on more than 13,000 people in a long-running US heart disease study. The study began in the 1980s, and along the way has recorded valuable data from participants, including diabetes test data.

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The team analyzed that data, and reported that a positive result for glucose and HbA1c from just a single blood sample can confirm type 2 diabetes.

” This could change care potentially allowing a major simplification of current clinical practice guidelines,” Selvin said in a university news release.

“Doctors are already doing these [glucose and HbA1c] tests together — if a patient is obese, for example, and has other risk factors for diabetes, the physician is likely to order tests for both glucose and HbA1c from a single blood sample.

“It’s just that the guidelines don’t clearly let you use the tests from that one blood sample to make the initial diabetes diagnosis,” she explained.

“I’m hoping that these results will lead to a change in the clinical guidelines when they are revised in early 2019, which could make identifying diabetes a lot more efficient in many cases,” Selvin said.

Diabetes experts welcomed the findings.

With Agency Inputs

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