Broccoli Compound Lowers Blood Sugar In Type 2 Diabetes Patients

Researchers found that a powder containing a highly concentrated dose of sulforaphane, a chemical derived from broccoli sprouts, reduced blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes.

The findings of this small study were recently published in Science Translational Medicine.

“We’re very excited about the effects we’ve seen and are eager to bring the extract to patients,” said study coauthor Anders Rosengren of the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. “We saw a reduction of glucose of about 10 percent, which is sufficient to reduce complications in the eyes, kidneys, and blood.”

Ninety-seven people with type 2 diabetes participated in the three-month study. Each participant took either a highly concentrated sulforaphane powder, or a placebo, and most of them continued taking metformin, a commonly prescribed medication that lowers blood glucose. The sulforaphane dose used was 100 times stronger than what naturally occurs in broccoli.

Compared to those taking the placebo, investigators found the sulforaphane powder lowered participants’ fasting blood sugar by 10 percent; outcomes were strongest in those who were obese.

“More research is needed to see if this repurposed drug can be used to treat type 2 diabetes, as it was only tested in a small number of people and only helped a subset of those who are taking it,” says Elizabeth Robertson, director of research at the charity Diabetes UK. “For now, we recommend that people continue with the treatment prescribed by their healthcare team.”

Source: The Scientist
Photo credit: Trisha

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