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Spice Found In Curry May Help Diabetics Manage Blood Sugar

The spice turmeric contains curcuminoids, which are pigments that give the spice its yellow color. A new study has found that curcuminoids may help people with type-2 diabetes keep their blood sugar levels under control by reducing levels of free fatty acids.

Previous studies have shown that free fatty acids play a key role in the development of insulin resistance. Decreasing free fatty acid levels could help lower glucose levels in type-2 diabetics.

One hundred overweight or obese adults with diagnoses of type-2 diabetes participated in the study. Over the course of three months, half of the group took a supplement of 300 mg of curcuminoids and half took a placebo.

At the conclusion of the study, the researchers noted a reduction in blood glucose levels, insulin resistance, free fatty acids and hemoglobin A1C. Hemoglobin A1C is a marker of excess blood glucose present over an extended period of time.

The study was conducted at Harbin Medical University and the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention. It was published online ahead of print on August 29, 2012, in Molecular Nutrition & Food Research.

Turmeric has been used in folk remedies to ease menstrual cramping, help heal wounds, and to improve the appearance of skin. All of these benefits are a result of the anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric.

Turmeric is most commonly found in curry, but the researchers of this study pointed out that the amount of curcuminoids present in these supplements were much higher than would be reasonably possible to get through diet alone. They recommend taking curcuminoids as a supplement.

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