How Resveratrol Helps Regulate Blood Sugar

Byron J. Richards, Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist

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How Resveratrol Helps Regulate Blood Sugar
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One has to be impressed by nature's power to bolster health. As drug companies try to document that one of their concoctions can manipulate a single parameter of health while hopefully not causing too much damage, nature provides potent remedies that simultaneously influence multiple aspects of health while being free of adverse side effects. There simply is no comparison. The more science looks into the mechanisms of natural remedies the more impressive they become. Resveratrol is a case in point.

Resveratrol is best known for its activation of the SIRT1 gene that is associated with longevity. SIRT1 is also activated by dietary restriction, and shut down when a person eats too much, which is why many people are speeding their aging process and shortening their lives. Resveratrol works best when you aren't overeating, because it helps rejuvenate your SIRT1 gene fitness. Once SIRT1 is activated it has powerfully beneficial effects on a wide variety of gene signals associated with healthy metabolism.

Several new resveratrol studies add to several previous studies supporting the role of resveratrol to help improve blood sugar metabolism. One of the studies took immune cells from diabetic patients and found they lacked SIRT1 activity compared to immune cells from people with normal blood sugar. These SIRT1 deficient cells also had increased rates of free radical damage. The researchers showed that resveratrol could boost SIRT1 levels to normal, and stop the free radical damage, as SIRT1 activation influenced several other gene signals to improve metabolism.

The next study looked into the impact of resveratrol in an animal model of type 2 diabetes. Resveratrol decreased blood sugar and triglycerides while boosting levels of the all important blood sugar regulating hormone adiponectin. Resveratrol boosted cellular levels of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), an important cellular signal involved with the biological clock and use of energy within a cell. In other words, when you feel fatigued or jet-lagged your AMPK is on the blink. The net result of boosting AMPK was to significantly improve the liver's ability to metabolize sugar that resulted in lower blood levels of hemoglobin A1c (a key marker of improved glucose metabolism). Resveratrol even helped the liver and muscles dispose of calories as heat, a natural metabolic boost for improved calorie burning, especially in those who are overweight.

Yesterday I mentioned how green tea helps protect against high blood sugar. While both resveratrol and green tea help lower free radical damage, much of their metabolic assistance influences different genes, all in support of better metabolism. Any person with blood sugar concerns should follow the Leptin Diet and employ a variety of natural support that can help guide metabolism into a healthy direction over time.

Resveratrol continues to build on its image as an anti-aging nutrient. We know from studies in healthy centenarians that optimal blood sugar metabolism is vital to a long life. Resveratrol is an important tool in the longevity toolbox.

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