As diabetes numbers follow the soaring global obesity rates, public health centers everywhere need solutions for both prevention and treatment.
Researchers in Brazil looked to probiotics for a possible answer. Effects of Probiotics on Glycemic Control and Inflammation in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-controlled Study appeared April 2015 in The FASEB Journal online.
Hercia Martino and colleagues conducted clinical trials with 50 people with Type 2 diabetes (T2D).
- First group consumed 120 grams per day of milk fermented with strains of Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium lactis
- Placebo group received 120 grams per day of conventional fermented milk
After 6 weeks of intervention, these markers were changed:
- Probiotic group showed decreases in fructosamine and hemoglobin A1C (average blood sugar over 2-3 months)
- Placebo group showed reductions IL-10 and other immune markers
The authors wrote: “Probiotic consumption improved the glycemic control and prevented a reduction in anti-inflamatory cytokines in T2D subjects. The Fermented milk intake seems to be involved with reductions in inflammatory markers. “
Insulin resistance is indeed linked to systemic inflammation. In the liver, the inflammatory process is at least partly regulated by T cells of the natural killer and T varieties (NKT).
The potential of probiotics to prevent reductions of cells involved in the immune process and thus improve the insulin picture is a promising direction in diabetes research.